Victorian market brings big festive buzz to High Street

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Shoppers brave icy conditions as seasonal fair puts visitors in Christmas spirit

Crowds thronged the streets to visit the first night of Garstang’s Victorian Festival and it wasn’t just the free mulled wine and mince pies that had people talking.

Thirsty work: Crowds throng the event

Thirsty work: Crowds throng the event

The much loved event, which has become a calendar favourite, was full to the rafters with festive spirit as young and old came together to join in the celebrations.

Stalls lined Garstang’s High Street, from butchers, to bakers to candle stick makers, all of whom had braved the icy night, their stalls a mass with handmade gifts, local produce and fine food fancies. But it wasn’t only the stalls that went back in time to join in the historical fun, as most Garstang businesses opened their doors to cold but happy guests.

Richard Whyman who opens Marketplace News both festival nights said: “For us, it’s not about us doing business, it’s a way of contributing and giving a good service to the town.

“It has become a calendar event for people and is growing year in, year out.

“It’s a great opportunity for local businesses to sell their wares and bring quality produce to the High Street.”

His views were echoed by Town Mayor Coun Graham Salisbury, who said: “It’s a splendid turn out and event which should be encouraged.

“Year on year the event is growing greater, it get’s everyone in the Christmas spirit and should be encouraged.”

Woven in between the crowds, musical and dance delights entertained the masses, with the Jubilee Silver Band, Red Rose Jazz Band, Leyland Morris dancers and Singleton Clog dancers to name a few, but not to forget the choirs of school children which included children from Garstang Community Academy, SS Mary and Michael, Claughton St Mary’s and Garstang St Thomas.