13/11/2012 15:43 GMT

(PICTURES) Olympic And Paralympic Athletes Switch On Regent Street Christmas Lights

A string of giant gold discs flicked into life in mid-air as a team of British Olympic and Paralympic athletes switched on the Regent Street Christmas lights.

London 2012 champions including long-jumper Greg Rutherford, rower Helen Storey and four-time gold medallist cyclist Sarah Storey were among 40 athletes who took part in the great annual switch-on.

regent street christmas lights

Fireworks explode at the switch on of the Regent Street Christmas Lights in London

The 12 days of Christmas, the words Team GB and ParalympicsGB, plus holly and berry garlands all appear on the gold discs.

For the first time the lights run the full length of the world-famous central London shopping street.

They run from north of Oxford Circus all the way down to Piccadilly Circus, before continuing south down Lower Regent Street in St James's.

Glover said: "I'm honoured to have been asked to switch on the famous Regent Street Christmas lights - it means so much to be doing so alongside so many other fantastic athletes from Team GB and ParalympicsGB."

David Shaw, of the Regent Street Portfolio at the Crown Estate, said: "We are proud to be able to celebrate the achievements of Team GB and ParalympicsGB in a culmination to an amazing year for London and the UK."

See more pictures from Regent Street in the gallery below