A VICAR in Bury is on the lookout for stars this Christmas - and our readers can lend a hand.

Rev Steve Openshaw, of Christ Church Walshaw, is today kicking off a star trail across the borough.

His idea is, with this festive season being different than those gone by, to unite communities behind Christmas stars.

The minister has already enlisted the support of St Stephens Church, Elton and Bolton Road Methodist Church, as well as a host of Elton schools.

He told the Bury Times that as many traditions, such as the lights switch-on at the Victoria and their own carol concert, had been cancelled, it was time for a fresh idea.

Mr Openshaw said: "Christ Church Walshaw has decided to launch our star initiative - something which the community can do together and bring joy at this special time."

He is hoping that when the stars are hung in windows and doorways, people can tag them on Facebook and Twitter with #Jesus IsTheStarOfChristmas.

The vicar has ideas for how the stars can take shape on the church's website.

Mr Openshaw added: "It’s anticipated that individuals, families, and local businesses and schools will make and share stars in their windows, on their doors, in their gardens and on their fences. We also hope people will come and put stars on the railings of our church too.

"Stars can be lit up, or plain, or have messages in them including to remember loved ones lost; to express thankfulness; and to say thank you to key workers.

"We also hope stars will help us to remember the real star of the Christmas story – Jesus."

The project has been launched to coincide with the first Sunday in Advent.