Huddled in the market square and framed by the Shire Hall, fourteen stalls braved the cold to make it to the Stafford Christmas market. But despite the bleak weather backdrop, the market buzzed with curious shoppers and soft descants of Christmas carols coming from the carousel (which never stood long enough for my poor phone camera to capture anything but a blur).
It may not have had the glamour and magnitude of Birmingham’s German Market but at least it was not spread like a wallpaper – pattern repeat every two hundred yards. Every stall was different, from the blacksmith who welded horseshoes into owls to the baker who made the best millionaire’s shortbread I’ve ever had (yes, it was even better than THAT one).
People came from all over the county to share their wares, from Leek, Cannock, and Stone. There was the Herb & Spice Co from Stoke-on-Trent, offering everything from spice blends, to kits for infusing your own gin (and I bet we all had a friend in mind for that Xmas pressie!). The Eco Food Garden Ltd came all the way from our local indoor market to offer nutrient-rich microgreens, with a growing kit perfect for Christmas gift and crafts with the kids. The Vine Inn Brewery from Rugeley, making microbrews of vanilla porter, ruby mild and grapefruit IPA, or if beer’s not your bent, how about a strawberry gin?
And this was just a small selection of everything on offer! And if you didn’t make it on Saturday, don’t worry – all of the stall vendors are here again on Saturday 15th December for the Christmas Maker’s Market on Crabbery Street. See you there!