THE countdown is on to Bolton’s Christmas lights switch on tomorrow night.

Crowds of people are expected to pack into Victoria Square to see local singing sensation Laura White do the honours for the town.

She will be joined by the Mayor of Bolton, Cllr Norman Critchley, and Father Christmas to flick the switch and turn the town centre into a winter shopping wonderland.

The 22-year-old singer, who shot to fame in last year’s X-Factor, will also perform her new top 40 single “You Should Have Known”.

The former University of Bolton student, who comes from Atherton, joins a line of local celebrities who have performed the big switch on, including comedian Peter Kay and boxer Amir Khan.

Last year’s event featured TV presenter Vernon Kay with a performance by Britain’s Got Talent star, dancer George Sampson.

The festive fun will start at 6pm tomorrow night, with a whole host of entertainment, before the lights are turned on at 7pm.

There will be a parade of Christmas characters, including Santa who will be joined by the Mayor, a lantern parade by pupils from Lever Edge Primary School, brass bands and carol singing.

The night will launch a traditional Christmas market, designed to attract shoppers to the town centre.

Christmas stalls will be in the square on Friday and Saturday and December 11, 12, 18, 19 and 20.

It is also hoped the switch-on event will also help boost the Marie Curie Nurses Appeal.

Staff from The Bolton News will be out in force in Victoria Square collecting donations towards the charity’s £200,000 target.

We are backing Marie Curie Cancer Care’s campaign which aims to provide more free nursing care for terminally ill people in Bolton.

Laura White has been guest of honour at several Christmas switch on events already, appearing in Blackpool and at the Lowry in Salford Quays.