Bumper turnout as Christmas officially comes to Portsmouth

17/11/11 PM''Commercial Road christmas light switch on in Portsmouth. Pictured is the crowd''Picture: Paul Jacobs (114102-18)

17/11/11 PM''Commercial Road christmas light switch on in Portsmouth. Pictured is the crowd''Picture: Paul Jacobs (114102-18)

Harriet Lee, 16

St John’s College, Southsea, GCSE art exhibition

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THE festive season officially arrived in Portsmouth as the Christmas lights were switched on in the city centre.

Pompey legends Linvoy Primus and captain Liam Lawrence, alongside with ex-Hollyoaks actor Marcus Patrick, were some of the stars that pushed the plunger and turned on the lights in Commercial Road.

SWITCH-ON Turning on the lights, from left, Marcus Patrick, Linvoy Primus, Pompey captain Liam Lawrence with his son Thomas, Lord Mayor Cheryl Buggy, Imogen Rogers, 10, Charlie the Clown Fish from Blue Reef and the 'Face of Cascades' Rachel Malley. Right, fireworks mark the switch-on

SWITCH-ON Turning on the lights, from left, Marcus Patrick, Linvoy Primus, Pompey captain Liam Lawrence with his son Thomas, Lord Mayor Cheryl Buggy, Imogen Rogers, 10, Charlie the Clown Fish from Blue Reef and the 'Face of Cascades' Rachel Malley. Right, fireworks mark the switch-on

Gosport-born Marcus, who will be starring in pantomime Cinderella at the Kings Theatre, Southsea, said: ‘It’s a nice homecoming to switch the lights on.

‘I’ve turned on Christmas lights in Watford before, but this means more.

‘We had a really good crowd and it’s nice to see so many people come out for it.’

Also on hand to help with the switch on was 10-year-old Imogen Rogers who was picked from the crowd.

She said: ‘I was really happy to be picked. It was great because from the stage I could see all my family and friends.’

Hundreds of people were entertained by local singers, dancers and a fireworks display.

Emma Parry, 27, of Sackville Street, Southsea, had brought along son William, seven, and daughter Inika, five.

Emma said: ‘We came straight after school at 3.30pm and have really enjoyed the evening.’

William added: ‘I loved seeing the lights being turned on and I’m really excited about Christmas.’

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