The star of this year's Charter Theatre panto Paul Danan has been fired after swearing on stage in front of hundreds of children.

Former Hollyoaks and Celebrity Love Island star Danan, who was due to play the lead role in Jack and the Beanstalk, swore twice on stage during the annual Christmas lights switch on last night, watched by a crowd of around 3,000 people.

But this morning bosses at production company Pele Productions said they were starting the search for a new lead actor.

Council leader Councillor Ken Hudson confirmed Danan had been removed from the show.

He said: "His outburst was a disgrace and an insult to the people of Preston. Pantomime is all about family fun and entertainment and we want families to come to the pantomime and have a great time.

"We're now looking for a new actor to play Jack, in Jack and the Beanstalk - someone who will wow the audience, but treat them with respect.

"The pantomime cast start their rehearsals on Monday and they will be working extra hard to put on a fabulous show for Preston.

"As such, this year's Jack and the Beanstalk will become one of best pantomimes in Preston's history."

Danan was also slapped with an £80 on-the-spot fine by police after the foul-mouthed outburst.

The Mayor of Preston, Coun Christine Abram, said she was disgusted by his comments and would be demanding talks with Guild Hall boss Chris Haylett to find out why Danan - who has admitted drink and drug abuse in the past - was chosen for the role.

She said: "It has been the talk of Preston and mums were last night saying that they would not go to the panto if he was in it.

"I am glad they have sacked him because he is not the sort of person we want here.

"I didn't know anything about him before he took the role but I now hear that he has a bit of a reputation.

"I shall be speaking with Chris to find out why he was picked to front what is a family show in the first place."