Media Release: Santa arrives in Glasgow to launch city’s Christmas campaign

Glasgow Santa

Glasgow Loves Christmas 2015 brought to life by stunning Adrian McMurchie visuals and animated multi-media advert

A VERY special guest has arrived in Glasgow to help the city launch its annual festive marketing campaign.

Wearing a specially-made pink suit to reflect the city’s PEOPLE MAKE GLASGOW brand, Santa was on hand in George Square and Buchanan Street to unveil this year’s Glasgow Loves Christmas programme.

Over the coming weeks, Glasgow’s Santa will experience all of the magic that Christmas in the city has to offer.

He’ll be leading a sea of fellow Santas pounding the streets in the Santa Dash; be one of the first to pull on some skates and pirouette at Glasgow On Ice, and he’s even agreed to help switch on George Square’s twinkling Christmas lights.

Glasgow’s Santa said: “Ho, ho, ho! It’s fantastic to be able to spend some extra time in this magical city – I’ve only ever seen chimneys before and now I can already see just how much Glasgow loves Christmas.”

Today’s launch of Glasgow Loves Christmas profiles the city centre’s festive offering and bumper line-up of fun events as well as unveiling this year’s official campaign creative.

Throughout November and December, an anticipated 11m+ visitors to Glasgow’s city centre can benefit from late night shopping at more than 1,500 stores, an exciting range of events for all the family and festive car parking options.

Councillor Frank McAveety, leader of Glasgow City Council and chair of Glasgow City Marketing Bureau, said: “We’re thrilled that Santa has chosen to spend some extra time in Glasgow before Christmas as we have so much to offer at this time of year.

“As the UK’s largest and most successful shopping destination in the UK outside London, our Style Mile is home to a huge selection of world-class brands and retailers – there really is something for every shopper and every budget this Christmas. Together with a packed programme of magical events and festive fun, it’s true that Glasgow Loves Christmas like nowhere else.”

The city’s Style Mile includes major retailers Buchanan Galleries, St. Enoch Centre, Princes Square, Argyll Arcade, House of Fraser and John Lewis.

It was one of the scenes captured by renowned Glasgow artist and illustrator Adrian McMurchie, who is at the heart of this year’s Glasgow Loves Christmas campaign with a series of stunningly detailed, hand-drawn illustrations of city landmarks and icons.

The drawings – which include George Square and Glasgow On Ice as well as the Style Mile – were then expertly crafted and brought to life by Glaswegian BAFTA winning visual artist James Houston, whose creative flair and technical skill were integral to the animations.

Adrian, who captured the length of Buchanan Street as part of his work, said: “This is definitely the biggest and most exciting job I have ever done. For a proud Glaswegian like me to be given the chance to draw the city’s most famous street was a real honour.”

This year’s Glasgow Loves Christmas campaign saw Glasgow City Marketing Bureau also work with leading city design agency, Maguires. Central to the project creative was the design and production of a ‘snowflake’ brand family, with each festive event having its own unique snowflake identifier. A lively and distinctive illustrative approach was proposed to showcase Glasgow’s vibrancy throughout the festive period.

In addition, Glasgow songwriter, John McLaughlin, devised and composed a memorable and festive music track which complements the visuals perfectly. It aired for the first time on STV on Saturday evening within a break during the X Factor as part of a wider TV and digital advertising campaign.

Glasgow Loves Christmas 2015 key city events include:

  • Sunday, November 15 – Christmas Lights Switch-On (ticket only – application process closed);
  • Sunday, November 22 – Style Mile Carnival (Christmas-themed ‘street’ festival with all your favourite festive characters);
  • Friday, November 27 – Glasgow On Ice: opening of the George Square ice rink (Open 12noon until 10pm weekdays and 10am until 10pm at weekends until Hogmanay, every day bar Christmas Day
  • Sunday, December 6 – Santa Dash (annual 5k fun run when 5,000+ people take to the streets in a Santa suit and beard – all in the name of charity).

For information on the above events and the city’s wider festive programming, visit where Glasgow’s Santa will also be writing regular blogs on his experiences in the city.


Notes to editors:

Residents, workers and visitors to Glasgow city centre can benefit from a range of festive city centre parking offers with all information available at

Glasgow Loves Christmas is a public / private partnership comprising Glasgow City Council, Glasgow City Marketing Bureau and Glasgow Life, together with six of the Style Mile’s major retailers – Buchanan Galleries, St. Enoch Centre, Princes Square, Argyll Arcade, House of Fraser and John Lewis. The programme launch and unveiling of the creative, supported by a national, multi-media campaign, marks the start of a city-wide seasonal events programme.

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