The historic Blackpool Illuminations will light up the Lancashire town for Christmas this year for the first time in their 108-year history.

Instead of being switched off in November, as has been tradition, they will remain lit through until January 3, 2012. The move comes as the seaside resort aims to boost tourism in Blackpool, which has been hit by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The light show will launch as planned on September 4, but the annual switch-on event, which ordinarily sees the lights turned on in front of a crowd of around 20,000 people at the Tower Headland, has now been scrapped. There will be a televised switch-on from the Tower Ballroom instead.