CHESHIRE Oaks will begin the countdown to Christmas next month with its annual launch event which includes a drive-in cinema screening and the return of its pop-up winter village.

The popular Ellesmere Port shopping destination will kick off its festive season on November 11 with the giant Christmas tree lights switch-on and a drive-in movie night.

Over the Christmas period shoppers will once again be able to visit the iconic – and Covid-secure – winter village, which will invite guests to book a VIP hut for groups of up to six who can enjoy table service and pre-ordered festive food platters.

In the run up to the big day, world-renowned toy shop Hamleys will have a 1,300 sq ft pop-up store, with exciting toy demonstrations and festive displays.

Cheshire Oaks has partnered with the Cheshire Community Fund to select Passion for Learning as its chosen charity to support throughout the festive season – including the donation of its annual fireworks budget.

The usual display cannot take place this year due to health and safety restrictions.

Kenny Murray, general manager at Cheshire Oaks, said: "Despite an unprecedented year that has limited our social interactions, the team and I are thrilled to welcome guests to celebrate Christmas safely at Cheshire Oaks.

"Alongside many other causes, we know that Passion for Learning has really struggled to raise awareness and donations this year, so we are pleased to be giving back and supporting our community through this selection of charitable activities."

Cheshire Oaks are inviting the public to nominate a 'local hero' to light up its 90ft Christmas tree this year, with those who attend the drive-in cinema night being able to catch a socially-distanced glimpse of the switch-on.

Tickets for the movie night are priced at £20 per car with 100% of ticket sales going to its charity partner.

The drive-in cinema will be located in car-park A and vehicle access is from 5pm. The film will start at 7pm.

Ticket holders are invited to vote on the Cheshire Oaks Facebook for the film of their choice out of Elf, The Grinch, Polar Express, Home Alone and The Santa Clause.