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Christmas Market draws in crowds

Aerial view of crowded street market and colourful marquees

Farnham town centre was packed with shoppers on Sunday (8 December), much to the delight of the more than 180 stall holders and small traders who took part in the Christmas market and the many local shops who opened their doors for the day.

“Shoppers flocked to the Christmas Market to pick up Christmas presents and festive goodies as well as enjoying the entertainment we put on for them,” says Iain Lynch, Town Clerk at Farnham Town Council. “Thanks to our wonderful sponsors – Abbeyfield Wey Valley Society, The Castle Inn, Kidd Rapinet Solicitors and SA Refurbishment – who threw themselves into the festivities, we were able to provide a free Santa’s Grotto, free face-painting, live music and Christmas carol singers. We put on free hoppa shuttle buses too, which I know many tired and laden-down customers greatly appreciated.”

Also at the market was a live nativity and children’s funfair. Farnham Town Council, which organises the market, estimates that around 15,000 people shopped at the market and in local shops throughout the day. The market straddled The Borough and Castle Street, taking in The Bush Hotel. 

Street-food galore was available all over the market, including artisan coffee, freshly made crepes and Spanish churros served with hot chocolate sauce.

As well as the chance to stock up on festive food such as cured meats and cheeses, and drinks, including locally produced spirits, liqueurs, ales and wines, the market provided Christmas shoppers with numerous unusual and original gift ideas. Homewares such as table lamps, candle holders, cushions and throws were available from local independent traders, as were popular choices of clothing and jewellery such as scarves, accessories and handcrafted silverware.

At the end of the market, Iain Lynch commented: “Putting on an event of this scale would not have been possible without the support of an army of volunteers. My thanks go to The Lions, The Hedgehogs and Network Scouts for helping with everything from stewarding to litter picking. Thanks must also be given to the business community – to The Bush Hotel for allowing use of their facilities, to Bill’s for keeping our volunteers going with coffee and bacon rolls and to The Botanist and John Davis Funfairs for providing power for stalls. Finally, thank you to Biffa for the giant clear up operation at the end of the afternoon.”

Shoppers will have another opportunity to shop for locally produced treats for the Christmas table and last-minute stocking fillers and gifts at the Farmers’ Market on Sunday 22 December from 10am to 1.30pm in Central car park. 

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