CHRISTMAS in Bolton is set to be a fun-filled affair — and the plan to provide free parking is expected to bring extra visitors to the town.

Thousands of people will be in Bolton over the Christmas and New Year period to enjoy the festive programme of events.

Bolton town centre is the place to be on Saturday, November 24, when Christmas gets off to a colourful start with the official lights switch on by television chefs The Hairy Bikers. Si King and Dave Myers will lead the countdown to the 6pm switch on, although the evening of fun starts at 4pm.

Later that evening the bearded duo will appear in their own show, Larger than Life, at Bolton’s Albert Halls with a mixture of recipes, jokes and stories.

There will be two family productions on Bolton stages over Christmas and into the New Year. The Albert Halls will feature Bolton funnyman Stu Francis, who is appearing in the pantomime Snow White and the Seven Dwarves from Saturday, December 1, to Sunday, January 6, while the Octagon Theatre will be staging Peter Pan from Friday, November 16, to Saturday, January 12.

The festive market, taking place in the town centre and Victoria Square, is expected to be another crowd-pulling attraction.