Eat, drink, be merry and shop this Christmas across Hambleton!

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Retailers and market traders across Hambleton are busy preparing for some great pre-Christmas festivities.

Plans are being made to give shoppers in Northallerton, Bedale, Stokesley, Great Ayton, Easingwold and Thirsk a special seasonal shopping experience at the independent shops and market stalls across the area, with the support of the district council.

“Our businesses and communities are pulling out all the stops to give residents and visitors a festive treat and great shopping experience”,” said Leader of the Council, Councillor Mark Robson.

“Our independent shops and markets offer unique gifts, food and drink for all. Don’t miss these great events and programme of activities in the coming weeks.”

Santa arrives in Bedale on 19 November when he joins in the fun at Bedale’s Christmas Festival and Food market before taking a trip on the Wensleydale Railway.

He moves on to Stokesley to pick up gifts and ideas for the elves at the late night shopping event on 24 November and popping back on 18 December to enjoy Merlin the pantomime.

Clocking up the miles he joins The Yorkshire Vet in Thirsk on 25 November at 5pm for the Big Switch On and joins in the festivities with Vale Radio, Ionica and Thirsk Primary School Choir. The three day Christmas Gift Fayre kicks off at the Town Hall at 4pm on the same evening.

Santa continues his rounds, accompanied by one of his elves in his sports car visiting Great Ayton on Saturday 26 November arriving at 3.30 for the Christmas Fayre on High Green and in time to switch on the Christmas tree lights at 4.00pm.

Festivities start in Easingwold on 30 November with the ‘Light Up A Life’ service on the Market Green and 3 December sees a charity market whilst Easingwold Lions hold their annual Carol Service in the Market Place on 17 December from 5.30pm.

As part of the ‘Santa Sunday’ in Northallerton, Santa will be welcomed into his grotto in the town arriving in his open top bus on 4 December.  A shop window competition is taking place from 3 December to 4 January.

And shoppers and visitors can take advantage of the free off street parking in all of the district council car parks every Thursday in December and every day between 25 December to 1 January.

For more information on what is happening in each town visit www.hambleton.gov.uk/Christmas

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