THERE was a festive feeling in the air at the latest of a much-loved monthly farmers market.

The Christmas Farmers Market drew in an impressive crowd of people - despite the winter chill - at Carlisle Cathedral on the afternoon of Saturday December 4.

The crowds of shoppers took the time to enjoy the local produce that stalls had to offer - from home made liqueur, cheeses and hand-made crafts - and the live festive music that bands and choirs had to share.

Sustainable Brampton is the community organisation that runs the monthly farmers markets in Carlisle and Brampton.

Chair, Tim Coombe highlighted the significance of this years Christmas market and what it means to local producers.

"Hopefully it means people enjoy it twice as much, having missed it last year," said Tim

"People are making an extra effort this year to get out and make the most of it because we don't know the freedom will go on for."

"It's very important that we do everything we can to maintain that quality of life and the quality of local produce.

"The craftsmen need it. They need to have [these] outlets and Christmas is a time where people are prepared to spend more and they want to give more."

Fiona Ormsby of Heidi's Custom Jewellery said that farmers markets were "really important" to independent producers like herself.

"Without them you wouldn't be able to sell any of your wears. We need them to survive."

Adrian McGreary of The Mawbray Cheese Company - who was showcasing a gargantuan variety of his own cheeses - also said that the face to face trade facilitated by the farmers market is "vital" to businesses like his.

"Most of our trade is done through the farmers markets. We dropped about two thirds of our trade because of Covid."

However, Adrian added that things are looking up for the business since he opened a new shop.

The Mayor of Carlisle Pam Birks was also present at the market.

Reflecting on the day she said: "[The market] wasn't here last year, but because it is outside it was one of the first things that started up again after lockdown.

"It promotes local businesses and our local resources, which is something we probably all need to consider a little bit more."