Earlier this week I was up in Birmingham, for work, when the receptionist told me that the annual Christmas Market was setting up. She was most excited about the prospect.
The Birmingham City Council microsite certainly bigged it up so, this morning, I decided to nip up to take a look.
I was actually quite impressed.
To begin with I walked from Snow Hill station to Victoria Square where to start with I was mildly under-whelmed. However further exploration revealed that the market also stretched the full length of New Street and there really are quite a lot of stalls.
There are unsurprisingly lots of outlets selling Germanic food and drink, but there are also lots of handicraft stalls selling everything from candles through to fruit bowls, clothing and general nic-nacs. Many of the outlets and artisans are local, but there are also plenty of our continental friends who have come over to give the market a truly authentic feel.
I recommend a visit. If possible, I suggest that you arrive as early as you can - by the time I emerged from the stalls at the bottom of New Street, it was really getting rather busy.
The market is open daily from 10.00am to 9.00pm daily from now until Friday 23rd December 2011.
Travel was by Chiltern Railway. They currently have a rather spiffing weekend offer (make sure you follow the instructions and follow the terms & conditions) enabling people to travel across their network for £10.
All in all, a good way to warm up into the Christmas spirit.