Brighton welcomed the festive spirit with music as the city’s Christmas lights have been switched on.

Choirs and a brass band performed around The Lanes and North Laine to mark the moment that illuminations were lit up.

Among the Christmas decorations to line the streets this year include street-art inspired lights, designed by local artists, with a festive-looking alien, a robot with a stereo and a seagull in a Santa hat among those lining North Street and Western Road.

Lights celebrating the uniqueness of North Laine were switched on in Bond Street, Kensington Gardens and Gardner Street, while more traditional illuminations dazzled shoppers in The Lanes, East Street and Preston Street.

The lights were organised by Brilliant Brighton, a collection of 517 businesses within the city's Business Improvement District, at a cost of roughly £100,000.

A spokeswoman for Brilliant Brighton said: “We’re feeling really festive and it’s great to get people out and about and feeling Christmassy.

“The Christmas lights are a gift from our more than 500 businesses in the city centre to residents and visitors to enjoys and signal the start of the festivities.”

Brighton and Hove Buses’ Santa Bus also made an appearance at the city-wide event, with Santa himself greeting shoppers along Western Road, North Street and Preston Street.

Santa’s elves were also seen visiting shops in the city centre to spread joy and hand out goodies to passers-by.

The Argus: Some of Santa’s elves were seen in the city centre spreading festive cheerSome of Santa’s elves were seen in the city centre spreading festive cheer (Image: The Argus)

However, despite the festive cheer, organisers expressed disappointment that not all the Christmas lights at Brighton’s Clock Tower could be lit up, with a last minute fault delaying the switch-on of one part of a canopy of lights.

Gavin Stewart, CEO of the Brighton Business Improvement District, said: “This is the central crown of our annual Christmas lighting display and it’s a real shame that we can’t launch the full scheme as hoped.

“Public safety is of course our paramount objective and we look forward to rectifying the issue quickly.”

The rest of the canopy is expected to be lit up by the end of next week.