THE countdown to Christmas was officially launched in Durham as soap stars presided over the unveiling of the city’s light display.
Emmerdale actors Dominic Brunt, Lucy Pargeter and Danny Miller, who play Paddy, Chas and Aaron, did the honours last night.
Thousands filled the Market Place as the ceremony, led by the Prince Bishops shopping centre, followed an afternoon of entertainment and live music by violinists Storm and singer Jason Isaacs and appearances by Metro Radio DJs.
Richard Toynbee, centre manager, said: “The turnout was brilliant. Thanks to everyone who came along to mark the start of Christmas in Durham.”
The celebrations continue in Durham this weekend, when the Christmas Festival returns on Friday to Sunday.