A FOUR-year-old girl who is battling a rare genetic brain disease will be a star for a day on Sunday (Dec 1) when Keighley’s Christmas lights are switched on.

Little Dollie Gorringe has been chosen to help ‘push the plunger’ to illuminate the town for the festive season.

She will be joined on stage for the ceremony by her parents Chrissie and Luke and older brother Leighton.

Dollie was selected to perform the honours following a Little Star search, through the Keighley News.

Dozens of nominations were received.

“It was a really hard decision to make as there were so many deserving young people in the area who would love to be a part of the switch-on,” said Paul Howard, manager of Keighley Business Improvement District – which is organising the event with the Airedale Shopping Centre.

“The decision was unanimous though. As well as taking to the stage, Dollie will have £250 of our Keighley Independents vouchers to spend in the town centre on the day.”

Dollie has Aicardi-Goutieres Syndrome, an incurable disease which usually results in severe mental and physical disability.

She is now having to be tube-fed through her nose and is on several types of drugs.

Around 400 children a year globally are diagnosed with the condition.

Leighton, eight, has also been diagnosed with a mild form of the disease.

The family – from Wilsden – is raising money for Martin House children’s hospice at Boston Spa, where both children receive care. There is an online fundraising page at justgiving.com/fundraising/martin-house-dollie-gorringe.

Chrissie said she was delighted that Dollie had been chosen to perform the switch-on.

She added: “For us to do this is really nice, as a family making memories with our children. It means a lot.”

Also helping to switch-on the lights will be Hollyoaks and Strictly Come Dancing star Ashley Taylor Dawson.

He will be in the Airedale Shopping Centre from 2pm to sign autographs.

Also in the centre will be Bjorn the Bear, a life-size animatronic polar bear who will prowl around with his handler at selected times from noon.

Live, on-stage entertainment in Church Green will begin at 2.30pm.

The Voice contestant Callum Butterworth will perform and there will be giveaways.

The afternoon will culminate with the switch-on ceremony at 4.30pm and a spectacular fireworks display.

For further information, visit discoverkeighley.co.uk or search Discover Keighley on social media.