PEOPLE will be able to shop until midnight in East Lancashire as the build-up to Christmas gets underway.

In Blackburn. late night shopping will run on Wednesdays and Thursdays with shops open to 9pm.

Debenhams in Blackburn will open late on Thursday and Friday as shop bosses step up their bid for the town to have its ‘busiest ever’ festive period.

In Accrington and Burnley there will be late night shopping on Thursdays until 8pm.

Nelson has scrapped its festive opening hours for the second consecutive year.

Bosses at The Mall shopping centre in Blackburn said they were predicting their busiest ever festive period following the £66million redevelopment of the venue.

Late night shopping will kick off this Thursday to coincide with the Christmas lights switch on by Diana Vickers.

Loraine Jones, general manager at The Mall Blackburn, said: “We have seen an increase in footfall since the redeveloped centre was launched in July and customers are really enjoying the new retail offering.

“For the first time ever, to support the huge demand in the run up to Christmas, we will be opening for late night shopping two nights per week, Wednesday and Thursday, until 9pm.”

Fashion retailers H&M and Bank and jewellers, Pandora, will be open in time for Christmas in addition to recently opened Primark, Deichmann, Peacocks, USC, Next and New Look.

H&M will officially open on Tuesday, November 30, at 11am.

On Saturday, November 27, the shopping centre’s Santa’s grotto will open at the new entrance at Church Street, and will be welcoming shoppers until December 23. Tickets for the grotto can be obtained from Debenhams.

The Mall will also open until 9pm in Christmas week, on December 20, 21, 22 and 23.

The Arndale Centre in Accrington will also open late in the Christmas week.