Christmas festival attracts the crowds to Hartlepool’s Royal Naval Museum

Storyteller Joanne Keenan reading to Seren Fernihough (3) and her Dad David at the Festival of Christmas held at the National Museum Royal Navy. Picture by FRANK REID
Storyteller Joanne Keenan reading to Seren Fernihough (3) and her Dad David at the Festival of Christmas held at the National Museum Royal Navy. Picture by FRANK REID

A special visitor was guest of honour at Hartlepool’s Royal Naval Museum to help bring a little festive cheer to guests.

Santa was in town to greet youngsters as part of the venue’s Festival of Christmas celebrations at the weekend.

Santa meeting Neeva and Theo Gleeson at the Festival of Christmas. Picture by FRANK REID

Santa meeting Neeva and Theo Gleeson at the Festival of Christmas. Picture by FRANK REID

The event also included a number of re-enactments, a fire-breathing act, performances by carol singers, storytelling - all aboard HMS Trincomalee, Britain’s oldest warship still afloat - along with stilt walkers and aerial arts display.

Mum Amy Gleeson, was at the event with children Neeva and Theo, four.

The youngsters visited Santa during their trip.

Mrs Gleeson said: “It’s the first time we’ve been here, it’s really nice.

Charlotte McAleer (8) and Joel Newcombe (3) skipping with delight after their visit to Santa's Grotto at the Festival of Christmas. Picture by FRANK REID

Charlotte McAleer (8) and Joel Newcombe (3) skipping with delight after their visit to Santa's Grotto at the Festival of Christmas. Picture by FRANK REID

“We went to see the pirates and the singers before we have come to see Santa. The children have really enjoyed it.”

A number of stalls were available for people to browse with a selection of festive food and warm mulled wine on offer.

It is the first time the venue has hosted a Festival of Christmas celebration.

Claudia Stothart, three, was at the event with parents Lee and Kay.

Claudia Stothart with her painted face at the Festival of Christmas. Picture by FRANK REID

Claudia Stothart with her painted face at the Festival of Christmas. Picture by FRANK REID

Mr Stothard said: “We’ve been in the grotto with Claudia and we’ve been to see the demonstrations.

“It’s been really good.”

For information on events at Hartlepool’s Royal Naval Museum visit www.hartlepoolchristmas.co.uk.