EX-Coronation Street star Ryan Thomas has been confirmed as the man who will be switching on the Christmas sparkle in Swindon this year.

The actor, who played Jason Grimshaw in the soap for 16 years until leaving this summer, will flick the switch on the town centre Christmas lights as part of an extended weekend of celebrations, which will also bring Britain’s Got Talent dance sensations Boogie Storm and X Factor winner Ben Haenow to Wharf Green.

Ryan is also the star of this year’s Wyvern pantomime, Cinderella.

This year’s switch-on takes place on November 19 and 20, with family entertainment across both days.

Corrie star Ryan will be on stage from 5.15pm on the Saturday, joined by Best of Swindon winner Phoebe Maddison, members of Swindon Dance, the Rock Choir and Ben Haenow. The switch-on event will be followed by a fireworks display.

On Sunday, November 20, Boogie Storm will take centre stage and the shopping streets will be lit up by a lantern parade.

More information about the weekend, and this year’s full programme of festive events, can be found at www.swindontowncentre.co.uk/Christmas