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PORTSMOUTH will be given a festive glow in the coming weeks as Christmas lights are switched on throughout the city.

Lights along Palmerston Road, Southsea, will be turned on tonight by the Kings Theatre’s pantomime prince, Rob McVeigh, who plays Prince Valentine in Snow White.

And he will have the help of Charlie the Clownfish – a costumed character from Portsmouth’s Blue Reef Aquarium.

A number of live performances will take place at the event, including Manic Stage Productions, Streetforce DC, Mayville High School Choir, Timestep School of Dance, and Portsmouth Grammar Brass Band.

The event takes place from 4pm to 6pm and will finish with a firework display.

During this time, Santa will be in the precinct to meet the public, alongside Fagin and his gang, and Charlie the Clownfish.

Jen Atkinson, from the Blue Reef, said: ‘It really feels like the official run-up to Christmas begins with the switching on of the Christmas Lights in Southsea and it’s great that Charlie has been invited to take part in the celebrations.

‘He’s definitely going to be kept busy over the coming weeks but we’re all looking forward to getting in the festive mood and we’re busy planning our own Christmas activities here at the aquarium.’

Charlie will also help turn the lights on at High Street, Cosham, on November 28, from 4pm to 6pm.