GANDALF the great will be celebrating his milestone birthday in Bolton next year!

It might not be his 2,020th birthday, but legendary actor Sir Ian McKellen has chosen to be in his hometown to mark his 80th birthday.

The event on May 25 coincides with the A-list star performing his new solo show at the Albert Halls.

Sir Ian has made a deliberate effort to be in Bolton on the day ­— the town where he says he grew up, discovered theatre and developed a passion for acting.

Performing within Bolton Town Hall, where his father was borough engineer, Sir Ian will feel right at home as he revives the Gandalf character he made famous.

As the organic show develops, Sir Ian might also invite people on stage with him ­— that would certainly be a memorable treat for the lucky theatregoers.

As big a star as he is, Sir Ian could have picked any town or city to celebrate his 80th birthday, but it says plenty about him that he chose to come home to his roots.

Whenever Sir Ian visits Bolton, he is polite, friendly and approachable. There are no airs and graces about one of the most recognisable faces on the big screen.

He goes about his business and chats with theatre fans, Octagon casts, as well as people in the street.

As council leader Linda Thomas says, Bolton will pull out all the stops to ensure it is a birthday to remember.