WIGAN town centre has that festive feel again after the Christmas lights were turned on in front of a crowd of thousands last night.
X Factor boyband Kingsland Road were at the top of an impressive bill which was filled with local and national talent.
The rain held off as the crowd braved the cold temperatures to see Britain’s Got Talent star Olivia Archibold open a show which consisted of Olly Jacob, Keith’s teeth and friends, Myth of Unity, Heidi Anne and Wigan acts the Birchalls, Zoe Unsworth, A Me B and Scott Chapman.
CBBC puppet Hacker T Dog – who also claims to be from the town – entertained the audience as well.
There were also appearances from Latics’ Neill Rimmer and Warriors stars Scott Taylor, Dom Crosby and Darrell Goulding as well as the FA Cup, Challenge Cup and Super Legaue trophy.
Once again, the event was hosted by former Big Brother contestant Luke Marsden with DJ Danny Bee.
The lights came on with a flick of the switch at 7.30pm much to the delight of the waiting masses who watched on under a flurry of artificial snow.
Host Luke Marsden said: “It’s been another fantastic act and I’m privileged to be asked to do it for a sixth year.
“We have so many great acts with a lot of them local, it’s just fantastic.”
Singer A Me B: “The crowd was amazing!
“I’ve done the St Helens switch on before so to be able to do my hometown one is brilliant.”
Claire Jones, 34, from Hindley: “The lights look great and the bands were amazing!
“My two girls love Kingsland Road so they were over the moon!”
The switch-on marks the start of late night shopping in Wigan town centre which will run every Thursday until 8pm throughout the festive period.
This Sunday will see the annual Santa and reindeer parade, which starts at 1pm from Mesnes Park arriving at Market Place at 1.30pm.
The parade includes Father Christmas, four of his magical reindeer, marching bands, costume characters, stilt walkers, fire eaters, acrobatic elves, snowmen and much more. Market Place will then light up as the performers entertain the crowds along with Santa and his reindeers until 4pm.