11:49 Tuesday 03 December 2013

Town step into Christmas with lights and market

Written byJOANNA CRAIG

THE town truly got into the festive spirit at the Christmas lights switch-on and Victorian-style market to mark the beginning of the Yuletide season.

Thousands flocked to watch the popular annual lights display in the Market Square, as town mayor Hugh Montgomery flicked the switch at the annual town centre spectacular.

The Victorian market offered a selection of exciting stalls offering gift ideas to Christmas shoppers and stall holders embraced the traditional theme by dressing up in Victorian clothing.

Roasted chestnuts were a-plenty and the mulled wine and hot chocolate van saw a roaring trade on the chilly November night.

Redfern’s Cottage held a stand with all proceeds going to the museum in Carter Street, a wood turner sold beautiful handmade gifts and Santa put in an appearance with his reindeer to entertain the children.

Handmade crafts, sweets, mince pies and jewellery were just some of the items for sale.

More than twenty businesses in town opened late to allow everyone the chance to start their Christmas shopping.

Rupert Hill, organiser of the lights said: “A lot of hard work went into the evening by the stallholders to make for a successful night.

“We had a great turn out from the general public, which is what we were hoping for and thousands of people showed up for the grand switch-on at 5pm.

“Helen Davies was a great help to us, as she organised the event last year by herself and gave us fantastic direction this year.

“It was certainly a chilly night for the stallholders but everyone made a great effort to dress up Victorian-style.

“There was a hog roast and a large choice of market stalls.

“Many shops stayed open til 8pm for the evening.”

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