Photos: Jack Western
If you haven’t already been (locked in the library as all you dedicated students surely are at this time of year), get yourself down to Parliament Square for York’s twinkling Christmas market – forget jetting over to Germany, or ferrying your way to Lille for your stocking goodies. Unfortunately you may have missed the Coca-Cola van which made an appearance with sleighs full of free samples. If you’ve already left, you will miss the unique festive atmosphere. I left today, and I could already do with a crepe and a bit of carol singing to get me through my essays, or some mulled wine to forget about them. And you’re never, EVER too old for the carousel.
There’s no excuse for a lack of presents (well, maybe except a severely depleted bank account) under the tree of a York student; we have Santa’s grotto on our doorstep and hundreds of shoppers flood in from miles around. A word of warning – avoid peak times such as Saturday mornings, and perhaps arrive early to find everything fresh. Certain companions of mine arrived horrifically hung-over for a look around, and were not impressed at the suggestion that they try some of the quirky flavoured vodka samples going whilst battling against the heaving crowds.
We were content to stock up on multiple Mars Bars brownies and hit the ‘Deliciously Yorkshire’ stalls for some treats. The Baileys hot chocolates are guaranteed to leave you with a warm fuzzy feeling. I’d recommend the variety of jarred wonders on sale as Christmas presents for foodies. The chilli jams, garlicky good things and lemon curd were among my favourites. Not sure about the practise of buying cheesy gifts though; the Camembert I got for my birthday on the 3rd of December has quickly grown pretty pungent (although apple wedges dipped in baked Camembert is the ultimate indulgence).
Aside from the festive munch, there are loads of crafty things and silvery jewelled bargains to be had. It was also noted that the majority of stallholders were good-looking but that could be attributed also to the buzzing atmosphere and their attractive wares. Don’t forget, you can always negotiate with the stallholders if you buy a few items in bulk and love a bargain. I only regret not nabbing a few more bits to be opened come the 25th December.
DON’T MISS IT. MAGICAL.