Earlier this month I was lucky enough to have a day out at our local Christmas market in Lincoln. I have memories of visiting as a child when we lived in Sussex (my big brother was at Lincoln Uni) and it was always great.
Recent years however we have been gradually more and more disappointed. Last year we walked in one side and straight out the other, it was awful! The crowds were all hurried along in a one way system which meant not only could you not stop to look at anything, most the time you couldn't even see anything. It didn't feel safe to take our toddler even though he was securely strapped in his pram, people pushed, shoved and snarled.
The stalls left a lot to be desired with pound shop tat and lots of Santa hat stalls, how many can one person wear? The food stalls weren't very exciting and the craft stalls that were pretty much inaccessible due to being placed in a total bottle neck area seemed expensive and unoriginal, unlike years ago where they were local craftsmen selling their festive treats, great food and trinkets.
This year I'm pleased to say felt just like the old days. Firstly, we visited early on the Sunday morning pretty much when it opened. We took our three year old on foot and four month old in her pram. We had plenty of room, although busy we weren't hurried in any stupid direction against our will (may have been more like that at busier times though I can't be sure!).
The stalls were really well laid out, easily accessible and interesting. We didn't buy a great deal but then its our city so I would maybe have got more as a visitor. I did really enjoy looking at it all and it was lovely to see a great atmosphere back at the market and it seemed that this year it had a totally different vibe and felt very safe to bring our children too.
We took our son on some rides which I didn't think for a treat were too overly priced (£2 approx per ride). We each had a hot dog which were quite expensive, two at £3.50 and my husbands bratwurst (lol) at £5 but it was a treat and it is once a year so we were quite happy to pay that for our lunch and they were very tasty and filling.
Next stop was the bakery that sells magical giant cakes and donuts (if you're reading this Mr. Weight Watchers, it was a treat day - OK!) where we got our yearly giant donut, one princess one, pink with sprinkles and one chocolate with chocolate sprinkles. People complained about the price of these which was £1.50 but they are giant and amazing in my opinion and my market highlight!
We all had a fantastic time and stopped off for a quick play and wander around the museum at The Collection. Our son got to sit with Santa, see a dinosaur skeleton and have a fab time so he was a very happy boy, he actually thought the market was Christmas and was very happy with that telling us "thanks Mummy and Daddy I loved Christmas!".
All in all a great day out this year and I am so pleased that they have made some changes and been a little more selective on their stall choices. It really felt like a lovely start to the festive season and I am already excited for next year and possibly braving the big wheel.
Well done Lincoln, You did good!
Thanks for reading,