THE STARS came out and thousands flocked to the streets for Guiseley's Christmas lights switch on.

Crowds of people filled Towngate on Sunday as the countdown to Christmas got underway with a festive market and entertainment before the lights were switched on by Emmerdale actors James Hooton (Sam Dingle) and Karen Blick (Lydia Hart).

The crowds were entertained by acts including Guiseley Primary School Choir, WYSPA Dance Academy and solo singer Amber Lloyd Parry.

A huge pom-pom "snowball" fight, provided by local community arts company Codswallop CIC, added to the fun, along with funfair rides, market stalls, a food court and a spectacular fireworks display.

Organiser Stuart Andrew, the MP for Pudsey, Horsforth and Aireborough, said: "The switch on has exceeded our expectations with thousands turning out in support. I'm so grateful to all our sponsors, local businesses and market stall holders for supporting us so brilliantly. The team of volunteers from our organising group worked so hard and from the feedback we have received it was enjoyed by all those who attended.

"It was particularly poignant as the fireworks display was in memory of Wendy Fawell who lost her life in the Manchester terrorist attack. Her children, Adam and Charlotte, were clearly moved by the support that came from the crowd for them."

Mrs Fawell is also being remembered with a new light in the shape of a stargazer lily, her favourite flower.

Mr Andrew added: "In addition to the lights that the local councillors have funded at the gyratory, we have added more around Towngate, Otley Road and White Cross and hope to add even more for next year. I cannot thank everyone enough for all their support and particularly the organising team."

The organising committee will begin planning their next community event for July 2018.

The lights switch on was sponsored by Manning Stainton and the Aireborough Decorating Centre.