The people of Handbridge came together with sack-loads of festive spirit for the annual Christmas community event.

The event, organised by the Handbridge Community Association (HCA), involved high street businesses and primary school children in festive activities for all the family, and to allow local residents and shoppers from further afield to enjoy late night shopping.

Pupils from Overleigh Primary School delighted crowds with their carol singing, with Overleigh pupil Avi Sharma’s poster being used to promote the event, after winning the design competition.

Further entries and runners up are displayed on the Handbridge community noticeboard.

Compere Dave O’Connor then introduced local band Blue Manouvre; raising spirits with their Christmas setlist.

A highlight of this year’s event was The Challenge: a set of four festive tasks testing the speed and skill of young participants, who could have an official picture taken after completing all four challenges.

Children taking part were encouraged to pin the tail on the reindeer at The Palace Darling, with further games hosted by Alec Edwards, Chaps barbers, Spoilt for Choice and CLS Estate Agents.

Excited children had the opportunity to meet Santa in his grotto, kindly hosted by Steve Vaughn at the Handbridge Garage, who also provided sponsorship towards the event along with Brittania.

Further down the high street, Handbridge businesses tried to puzzle punters with the ‘what’s wrong with this window?’ competition; this will continue throughout December for shoppers to visit Handbridge and guess all 12.

Once again Brown Sugar handed out mince pies and mulled wine to warm the hands and hearts of attendees.

Younger customers could get their faces painted at HL Financial and Apollo Blinds hosted the ever-popular tombola.

Cllr Neil Sullivan, who attended the event, said: “The event has been a wonderful success and it is heart-warming to see Handbridge alive with festive cheer.”

Cllr Razia Daniels and MP Chris Mattheson also attended.

HCA Secretary and event organiser Julie Rowland described the attendance as amazing, and added: “2016 has been all about the HCA raising its profile within the community and expanding our networks on social media, with 2017 set to be even more exciting!”