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Lantern Parade adds new dimension to late night shopping

St Martin of Tours, a Roman soldier who was canonised after generously halving his military cloak to clothe a beggar during a snowstorm, will be remembered during a Skegness Lantern Parade on Thursday.

St Martin of Tours, a Roman soldier who was canonised after generously halving his military cloak to clothe a beggar during a snowstorm, will be remembered during a Skegness Lantern Parade on Thursday.

A festive parade will take place in Skegness on Thursday evening, telling the tale of a Christian saint closely linked with Advent.

Skegness Carnival Committee and the Skegness Partnership have organised the St Martin Lantern Parade, as one of several new events to make Thursday’s late night shopping more appealing.

Town manager Stefan Krause hopes this will be an exciting event to rally the community together in festive celebration.

He said: “The Lantern Parade is a great opportunity for community to get involved and offer something completely different in this Christmas period.”

Youngsters from around the town have been invited to make their own battery-powered lanterns using free craft materials available from Monday at the Skegness Standard office and the Hildreds Centre.

The parade will be led by a horse riding performer playing St Martin of Tours, a Roman soldier who was canonised after generously halving his military cloak to clothe a beggar during a snowstorm.

The following night, St Martin was said to have dreamt of Jesus wearing the half-cloak he had given away, telling the angels: “Here is Martin, the Roman soldier who is not baptised; he has clothed me.”

A speaker will explain the religious story behind St Martin throughout the parade as it sets off at 6.30pm from Skegness Cricket Ground along High Street, finishing at the Christmas tree outside the Hildreds Centre.

Children carrying a lantern will receive a free goodie bag from Santa Claus and his reindeers Peter and Paul after completing the parade at around 7.15pm.

Skegness Partnership chairman Jimmy Botton hopes this innovative new festive event will instil a new cultural outlook among the late night shoppers.

He said: “We want to rediscover our town centre and old traditions - St Martin is celebrated in most countries within our Transnational Network and it will be interesting to see if Skegness gets in the mood too.”

 

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