OVER a thousand people braved the cold and rain to attend the Dudley Christmas light switch-on last weekend.

Families packed into the town centre on Saturday, November 23, to enjoy the start of the festive season.

The Mayor of Dudley was joined on stage by BBC WM’s Caroline Martin to switch on the town’s lights, while local talent in the shape of JMS, JJ Dance Group and Jewel Academy took to the stage.

Free panto performances by Funtime Theatre were staged in the Churchill Precinct and people were able to browse Christmas craft stalls on Dudley Market.

Councillor David Stanley, the Mayor of Dudley, said: "Thanks to everyone who came to town today to enjoy this annual festive event despite the rain.

"Thanks also to the local groups who have performed on stage and to Tudor Markets who have once again supported the event."

Christmas lights switch-on events will be held in Brierley Hill on Friday November 29 and in Stourbridge on November 30.