Festivities in full swing as crowds attend the first Royal Hillsborough Christmas Market

December 17, 2021

Festivities where in full swing in Royal Hillsborough on Friday 3rd December and Saturday 4th December. Over 6,000 people gathered upon The Dark Walk and Hillsborough Fort in support of local artisan food producers and craftspeople showcasing their products at the first Royal Hillsborough Christmas Market, hosted by Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council.

Food and crafts lovers from far and near had the opportunity to enjoy a delicious array of festive flavours from some of Northern Ireland’s finest artisan producers including local favourites Spontaneous Deuce and Ispini Charcuterie. Other offerings included seasonal chutneys and preserves, speciality cheeses and rare breed meats, organic teas, juices and much more as visitors delighted in the opportunity to fill their festive larder.

Commenting on the event, Alderman Amanda Grehan, Chair of the council’s Development Committee said, “We are thrilled to host the first Royal Hillsborough Christmas Market and it is wonderful have extended the market across two days due to its popular demand. The high standard of local artisan food and crafts traders in attendance was phenomenal and I am delighted they chose Hillsborough as their showcase. We look forward to hosting more markets in the village next year to celebrate its newly acclaimed royal status.”

In addition to the fabulous choice of food and drink on offer, the Royal Hillsborough Christmas Market also offered marketgoers the chance to support their local crafts makers. A range of handmade wares was on offer with local makers including Ellie MacCandles, Wendy Ward Design, Plumpy Balms, LG Jewellery, Ruth Osborne Art and Lauren Fowler Handcrafted Company all showcasing their creations.

Visitors to Royal Hillsborough Christmas Market had their taste buds tingling with artisan coffee, hot chocolate and cakes from gourmet street-food and drink vendors including Dough Heads, The Hatch and Tribal Burger, with warming coffees and hot chocolates from Percy’s Coffee and Steady Neddy’s, each with their own distinctively seasonal menus developed using the best of Northern Ireland produce.

Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council pulled out all the stops by calling upon the local community to provide the seasonal entertainment. The sweet sounds of the Downshire Primary School Choir and Friends' School Brass Ensemble filled their air as visitors browsed the market stalls in the picturesque setting of The Dark Walk and Hillsborough Fort. Children enjoyed seasonal craft activities and there was even a visit from the big man, Santa himself, just to make sure visitors where on his ‘nice list’ in time for Christmas Day.