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Sunderland Christmas lights switched on

Emmerdale's Tom Lister pushed the plunger - he's playing Captain Hook in the panto at the Sunderland Empire.

The fireworks display also marked the start of late night shopping at The Bridges in the run-up to Christmas.

Sunderland's Olympic women's footballer Jill Scott and Olympic trampolinist Kat Driscoll were the star guests at the celebration held at the Civic Centre on Wednesday night.

Pupils from Castletown Primary sang to the crowds as part of the event.