HIGH street shops, restaurants, pubs and more got together as all the stops were pulled out for a huge Christmas festival.

Maldon's popular Vintage Christmas Fayre was cancelled last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The event returned yesterday and in an effort to give Maldon High Street a boost it returned as a huge Christmas Festival with shops open until 9pm and artisan and other stalls open along the street.

There was also a huge range of entertainment for all the family with a host of musical acts, a Punch and Judy show, reindeers, Father Christmas in his grotto and characters such as Mickey and Minnie Mouse and Frozen's Elsa making an appearance.

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It was kicked off with a lights-switch on by town mayor David Ogg, joined by mayoress and wife Sharon, at 5pm after which entertainment was in full-swing.

More than 40 stalls offered a wide range of craft and food and drink.

Maldon Books uniquely had three authors from the area at their stall for a book signing; Joseph A. Chadwick, Patrick Forsyth and Sam Scott.

Prizes were also awarded for best small shop window display, best large shop window display, best salon display, and best dressed restaurant or bar.

The winners were:

  • Best Large Retail Area - Bright’s Path of Maldon Edward’s Walk 
  • Best Large Shop Display - Coes 
  • Best Small Shop Display - Templeman Opticians, Salty Dogs, Danielle Styles and Woof & Co 
  • Best Restaurant Display - Sark and Driftwood Kitchen 
  • Best Salon Display - Kate Lifestyle

A spokesman for the event said: "From bars to bras...escape rooms and magical crystals, the support for this year's festival was incredible."

The high street was closed from 3pm to 9.30pm for the event and free shuttle buses were in place throughout the evening.