Festive joy as Christmas lights are switched on around the Black Country

The festive season has begun across the region as communities celebrated the big lights switch-ons

The lights bring a festive feel to Halesowen town centre. Photo: Dudley Council
The lights bring a festive feel to Halesowen town centre. Photo: Dudley Council

There were big crowds in Stourbridge, Halesowen and Wolverhampton on Saturday evening to welcome the return of events celebrating the official switch-on of Christmas Lights in town and city centres.

It had been two years since the switch-on events could take place due to coronavirus restrictions and each event set out to make up for lost time and put on a show for those in attendance.

The Grinch and X Factor star Chico helped to bring in the festive period in Halesowen and Stourbridge.

X Factor legend Chico puts on a show in Halesowen. Photo: Dudley Council

Both town centres were packed with people enjoying a night out, with the Grinch helping deputy Mayor of Dudley, Councillor Sue Greenaway to turn on the lights in Stourbridge.

Meanwhile, X Factor legend Chico performed a set and helped turn the lights on in Halesowen, which was run in conjunction with Halesowen Business Improvement District.

Councillor Greenaway said: "It was great to see our town centres packed with people bringing in the festive season.

"The town centre Christmas lights events signal the start of the build up to Christmas and hopefully traders enjoyed the benefit of more people too."

The Grinch helps hundreds of people in Stourbridge to get into the Christmas spirit. Photo: Dudley Council

Across the other side of the Black Country, hundreds of people flocked to Queen Square in Wolverhampton on Saturday night to see the annual Christmas lights switch-on make a welcome return at an event hosted by Dicky Dodd.

Those in attendance saw acts including Paw Patrol, Chris Westwood and Hit the Dhol, before East 17 hit the stage for the main event slot.

The 90s boyband played several of their hits before leaving the stage and reappearing with their iconic white puffer jackets to play their Christmas hit "Stay another day".

East 17's Joe Livermore at the Wolverhampton Christmas lights switch-on

After the performance East 17 were rejoined by Chase from Paw Patrol and the Mayor of Wolverhampton, Councillor Greg Brackenridge to officially turn on the lights.

The Mayor said: "We've had a rough couple years, but we're together now.

"Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, and as East 17 said earlier, everything is going to be alright."

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