The popular sixteen year old, who left the TV show last week, will be joined by Sheffielders Kyle Tomlinson – Britain’s Got Talent star – and Lucy Milburn – The Voice finalist, to entertain the crowds.

The countdown to the switch on will start just before 5.30pm but before that there will be entertainment for all ages throughout the day.

The festivities start with the Moor Christmas Party at 12.30 to 4.30pm, where kids can meet Santa, The Snow Queen and Christmas Elves, see a living nativity, and watch performances from dance groups, a brass band and choir.

In the city centre, around the Town Hall, Winter Gardens and Barker’s Pool, the fun begins at 2pm with appearances from Elf on a Shelf and Father Christmas, children’s film and TV characters and mascots from the emergency services.

There will be plenty of activities to choose from including the fairy grotto, carol singing, Christmas craft, story-telling and balloon modelling, plus fairground rides, fire engine rides, a spin on the big wheel and of course mulled wine for the grown-ups.

The main stage will have Heart Yorkshire breakfast presenters, Dixie and Emma, introducing the acts. Joining them will be the cast of this year’s Peter Pan pantomime at the Lyceum, Milkshake’s David Ribi and Panto Legend Damien Williams. There will be performances from dance troops, choirs, the Hyde Park Brass Band and some of TV’s biggest musical talents from The X Factor, BGT and The Voice. They will be joined by a surprise guest for the big switch on and as a special treat Dixie, on the drums, will be performing with his brand new supergroup.

Councillor Mary Lea, Cabinet Member for Culture, Parks and Leisure said:

Our light switch on event truly signifies the start of Christmas in Sheffield, drawing thousands of people to come out and celebrate this magical time of year together.

As well as the beautiful lights and decorations that will illuminate Sheffield this year, we have some brilliant acts and fantastic activities and appearances to get everyone feeling festive.

Last year was one of our biggest crowds yet, with more than 37,000 people coming along to kick-off their Christmas celebrations and with our brilliant entertainment, markets, fairground rides, festive bars and children’s activities I hope we’ll see even more this year to enjoy this wonderful occasion.

Throughout the festive season Sheffield will be alive with Christmas magic, cosy hideouts and children’s activities. The Christmas Market on Fargate and Santa’s Grotto outside the Peace Gardens open on Thursday 15 December, Santa’s Post Office and Brearley Bear’s Christmas trail, brought to you by Sheffield BID, also start later this month in the city centre, plus for those winter warmers, after work drinks and Christmas parties the Sleigh Bar and Thor’s Tipi Bar are back in Sheffield.

Christmas Lights Switch-on event map 2018

As in previous years the council is bringing back its gift of free Christmas parking on Sunday’s up until Christmas. Starting in time for the big switch on there will be six free Sunday parking days, from Sunday 18 November to Sunday 23 December in all council car parks and on-street parking bays.

The car park at John Lewis will be kept open late for those visiting the city centre on Sunday 18 November. Debenhams on the Moor is also joining in the festive cheer with a four-day offer of free parking for their customers for up to two hours, from Thursday 6 to Sunday 9 December.

Go to the council’s Christmas webpage to download a map and get all the details for Sheffield’s Christmas activities.

To keep up with all council events follow the Sheffield Events Facebook page @SheffEvents.