Thousands thronged the streets as Ilfracombe turned out in force once again for its hugely popular lighting of the lights to welcome Christmas to the town.

Celebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim LamertonCelebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim Lamerton

Now in its third year of being organised by the voluntary Combe Christmas Committee, the festivities stretched across the while weekend.

It all started on Friday evening with the big light switch in at the ‘square’ by the war memorial, with wall-to-wall crowds watching the show.

There were songs from the Small Pond Productions cast of The Sound of Music, running at the Landmark from tonight (Wednesday) until Saturday.

The switch on was led by compere Lee Baxendale, organiser Charmain Lovett, town crier Roy Goodwin and the mayor, Councillor Val Gates.

Celebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim LamertonCelebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim Lamerton

The weekend saw the Combe Christmas Market, plus entertainment around the harbour area and the switching on of the St James Place lights.

Charmain said: “We’ve once again been blown away by the support of the people of Ilfracombe. Each year the numbers increase and we can confidently say that we have North Devon’s biggest switch on event and the best lights too.

“What makes it all particularly special is that everything happens due to the amazing volunteers we have in the town.

“Everything from fundraising to security and electrical installation to entertainment is donated for free and it is a massive reflection of the generosity of people in this town and shows why our community makes Ilfracombe such a wonderful place to live.

Celebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim LamertonCelebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim Lamerton

“We’ve already started planning for next year’s event so look out for something bigger, better and brighter!”

Celebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim LamertonCelebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim Lamerton

Celebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim LamertonCelebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim Lamerton

Celebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim LamertonCelebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim Lamerton

Celebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim LamertonCelebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim Lamerton

Celebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim LamertonCelebrating the lighting of the lights in Ilfracombe 2018. Picture: Tim Lamerton

Ilfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon ElleryIlfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon Ellery

Ilfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon ElleryIlfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon Ellery

Ilfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon ElleryIlfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon Ellery

Ilfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon ElleryIlfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon Ellery

Ilfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon ElleryIlfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon Ellery

Ilfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon ElleryIlfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon Ellery

Ilfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon ElleryIlfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon Ellery

Ilfracombe lighting of the lights 2018. Picture: Tony GussinIlfracombe lighting of the lights 2018. Picture: Tony Gussin

Ilfracombe lighting of the lights 2018. Picture: Tony GussinIlfracombe lighting of the lights 2018. Picture: Tony Gussin

Ilfracombe lighting of the lights 2018. Picture: Tony GussinIlfracombe lighting of the lights 2018. Picture: Tony Gussin

Ilfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon ElleryIlfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon Ellery

Ilfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon ElleryIlfracombe Christmas lighting of the lights. Picture: Simon Ellery