Stars light-up shopping centre

Former Hollyoaks stars Matt Littler(left) and Darren Jeffries pictured at Peterlee last night.
Former Hollyoaks stars Matt Littler(left) and Darren Jeffries pictured at Peterlee last night.

FAMILIES braved the cold as two Hollyoaks stars performed a shopping centre’s Christmas lights switch on.

Matt Littler and Darren Jeffries, who played Max Cunningham and OB in the popular Channel 4 teen soap, flicked the switch and joined in the festivities in Peterlee last night.

Talented local singers and dancers also entertained the crowds on a stage in Castle Dene Shopping Centre.

Matt and Darren hosted a Christmas quiz on stage to decide the winners of a £1,500 holiday for two to Turkey and joined in other fun and games.

The line up included the Shotton Hall Theatre School, Hartlepool Stage Choir and a performance by a team of street dancers.

Group Flux dazzled onlookers with a colourful light show on stage.

And local singer Karen Kennedy belted out a series of modern and festive songs and the show was compered by DJ Marky B, of Sun FM.

Darren, 29, said: “We have DJ’d in County Durham before, but this is our first time in Peterlee. We thought we would check it out.

“The crowd were fantastic. There was a lot of energy.”

Matt, also 29, added: “It is cool to do this sort of thing. We really enjoy it.”

Since leaving Hollyoaks three years ago, Matt and Darren, have stayed close pals and present a music show on Channel 4.

Barry Parnell, new manager at Castle Dene Shopping Centre, said: “Our Christmas celebrations have really kicked off with national personalities from Hollyoaks coming along and Sun FM running things on stage.

“We hope the people of Peterlee enjoy the things we have put on for them and come along and see what we have got to offer.”

Peterlee has welcomed a series of celebrities to switch on their Christmas lights in recent years including pop singers The Cheeky Girls and Chico.