HUNDREDS of people braved the cold to celebrate the annual Christmas tree lighting in Westbourne.

The lights were turned on by Bournemouth-based boxing star, Chris Billam-Smith.

Choirs and carols added to the merry atmosphere in the build-up to the lighting ceremony.

Bournemouth’s popular clifftop goats also made an appearance earlier in the day along with Father Christmas himself.

Harry Redknapp had been scheduled to appear but was unable to attend. 

Bournemouth Echo:

Ahead of the ceremony, organiser Kenny Woodhead said: “We had such a big gathering last year.

“I think we had about 300 people, so we're hoping to have the same if not more, this year.

“We’ve got five or six artists all over the day, you know, singing, just bringing a bit more of the Christmas message to Westbourne and the community.

“Westbourne is such a community-based little village that most of the businesses are small and independent, and most of the people who live in Westbourne have one shop within them.

“It's a real village feel."

Westbourne Christmas tree can now be seen glistening from head to toe in joyful Christmas lights and present bows.

Bournemouth Echo:

The event was fully funded and organised by Bournemouth Coastal BID which will also operate all Christmas lights in Westbourne and the surrounding area.

The festive event hosted by Westbourne Traders took place on Saturday, December 2, at 4.30pm.