A SOUTH Shields leisure centre became a haven for Christmas shoppers at the weekend.
A Christmas Wonderland Fair was held at Haven Point, in Sea Road, on Saturday and Sunday.
The event was originally set to be held in a marquee in the Market Place but bad weather saw it moved to the town’s new leisure facility.
The venue was packed with shoppers looking for the perfect Christmas gift and traders from across the North East selling everything from Christmas cards and decorations to jewellery, handmade soaps, and chocolate.
Local businesses such as Dicksons and Minchella also had stalls at the festive fair.
Traders said it was fantastic to be involved in the Yuletide shopping event.
Caroline Tullis, from South Shields, was selling handmade wreaths and bespoke Christmas gifts on her stall.
She said: “It’s a really good opportunity for people to come into the town and have a look around.
“I would have loved for it to be where it was meant to be, but I think it’s great that it went ahead considering everything that has happened. The location is nice, it’s a lovely building.
“It’s really Christmassy and it’s a nice atmosphere.”
Another trader, Donna Heron, also from South Shields, was selling cards, wrapping paper and small gifts.
She said: “I think this was a lovely idea to bring something to South Tyneside and into Shields.
“It’s nice to see people shopping locally, and I think a lot of the stallholders are from South Shields as well.
“It’s nice and warm indoors, but it is a shame about the marquee because it would have been lovely.
“It would be fantastic to do it there another time.”
Christine Sparks was selling Christmas gifts and decorations.
The trader, from South Shields, said: “It’s really nice that South Tyneside has had this opportunity to have a Christmas market.
“I think everyone is slowly getting into the Christmas spirit and the children are helping by getting excited when they see all the nice things on the stalls.
“I would love to see another event like this in the future, and I think the people of South Tyneside would really appreciate it.”
Red Hughes travelled from Darlington with some stock from his business, The Red Chocolate Company.
He said: “It’s nice that the event is indoors. We did it last year but it was outdoors and it was very cold, but hopefully this year because it’s indoors it’ll do a little bit better.”