Festive seasons gets off to a sparkling start in the Capital

People attend the Light Night event in Edinburgh including the opening of 'Street of Light' on George Street, Picture; Jane Barlow
People attend the Light Night event in Edinburgh including the opening of 'Street of Light' on George Street, Picture; Jane Barlow
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IT might only be November – but yesterday Christmas well and truly got underway in the Capital.

Thousands descended on George Street for the annual Light Night event, marking the start of Edinburgh’s festive extravaganza.

Edinburgh Christmas lights switch on 20/11/16 Little voices big stars

Edinburgh Christmas lights switch on 20/11/16 Little voices big stars

As well as the dazzling lights, revellers were treated to choirs and musicians from across the Lothians and a spectacular fireworks display.

Forth Radio’s Arlene Stuart was joined on stage by deputy Lord Provost Steve Cardownie and double Olympic medallist Callum Skinner to switch on the lights at 5pm.

Callum, who has been dubbed the next Chris Hoy, achieved an Olympic silver medal when he came second in the men’s individual sprint, and a gold medal in the men’s sprint team along with fellow athletes Philip Hindes and Jason Kenny.

The 24-year-old previously told the News: “I’m proud to be returning to start Edinburgh’s Christmas festivities in the city I grew up in and where I first discovered track cycling.”

Edinburgh Christmas lights switch on

Edinburgh Christmas lights switch on

This year’s event also incorporated the opening of the Street of Light, which has been moved from the Royal Mile to George Street.

The jaw-dropping display sees 24 arches covered in a total of 60,000 bulbs, and was a huge hit last year among residents and visitors alike – something organisers hope to repeat.

More than 350,000 people are expected to snap up free tickets during its 35-day run.

Edinburgh’s Christmas celebrations run until January 7.

Edinburgh Christmas lights switch on 20/11/16 Callum Skinner turns on the lights

Edinburgh Christmas lights switch on 20/11/16 Callum Skinner turns on the lights

Edinburgh Christmas lights switch on 20/11/16 arlene stuart

Edinburgh Christmas lights switch on 20/11/16 arlene stuart