Christmas market not stopped by the weather

Santa and Buddy the elf with the Market Place Christmas tree, which fell victim to Storm Desmond.
Santa and Buddy the elf with the Market Place Christmas tree, which fell victim to Storm Desmond.

Storm Desmond failed to dampen the festive spirit at Alnwick’s Christmas market at the weeeknd.

Despite the terrible weather, Santa a Stormtrooper, carol singers and musicians drew in the crowds.

A Star Wars stormtrooper proved a popular addition to Alnwick's Christmas market weekend.

A Star Wars stormtrooper proved a popular addition to Alnwick's Christmas market weekend.

On Saturday morning, the Market Place looked grey and uninviting with the town’s Christmas tree felled by the wind. However, Alnwick Markets squeezed as many stalls as possible into the Northumberland Hall, along with a full programme of music from the Salvation Army Band, St Michael’s School and the Alnwick Playhouse.

Santa and his elf, together with Carlo Biagioni, chairman of the Chamber of Trade, braced the wind to tour all of the independent businesses around town which had special offers on as part of Small Business Saturday.

SHAK’s Stormtrooper drew a few surprised looks, but proved a big hit with Star Wars fans.

On Sunday, the wind finally abated and it was safe to put up stalls in the Market Place. Twenty traders booked in to sell their wares and there were stalls from HospiceCare North Northumberland, the Scouts and Alnwick Community Centre.

The music continued with performances from the High School Ceilidh Band. Gallery Youth spray-painted some seasonal signboards and the Splinter Group served waffles.

Ninette Edwards, from the Scouts, said: “We raised over £400 which was fantastic. There was a lovely atmosphere on both days with music and Santa.”

Market manager Dawn Watts said: “Of course this was not the weekend we had planned. It meant no alpacas – a big seasonal favourite. Other traders had to cancel once it was clear how difficult things would be.

“With a lot of hard work (and not much sleep) for the Markets team – and much support from our friends and followers on social media – there was Christmas cheer at the weekend.”