Kate Moss, Geri Halliwell and Alex Zane at first Highgate Village Christmas festival

08:58 20 November 2012

Alex Zane with organisers Charlotte Bourne and Jane Wiles. Picture: Polly Hancock

Alex Zane with organisers Charlotte Bourne and Jane Wiles. Picture: Polly Hancock

Archant

Highgate Village kicked off yuletide festivities in style with thousands of revellers, including Kate Moss and Geri Halliwell, enjoying its very first Christmas festival.

Alex Zane meets the reindeers and Christmas elf. Picture: Polly HancockAlex Zane meets the reindeers and Christmas elf. Picture: Polly Hancock

The village was transformed into a winter wonderland with fake snow, mulled wine and mince pies for all on Saturday.

Santa arrived with his reindeer while three wise men, who were accompanied by a two-humped Bactrian camel, entertained a crowd of thousands - including supermodel Moss and Spice Girl Halliwell.

The evening was hosted by TV presenter and Highgate resident Alex Zane, who switched on the village lights amid thousands of cheers. He said: “Having lived in Highgate Village for nine years I was absolutely thrilled to have been asked to turn on the Christmas lights.

“I can now tick that box on my ‘things to achieve in life’ list.

“The amount of effort that has gone into this year’s display was huge and to see so many people turn out for the big switch on was amazing.

“The atmosphere in the village all afternoon was brilliant and I can also forevermore say that I have seen a camel milling about in Pond Square.”

Christmas cheers on the night went to Highgate Village Business Association, which organised the festival - and in particular to Jane Wiles, owner of children’s shop notsobig and Charlotte Bourne, from Taylor Gibbs Estate Agent.

The dedicated pair gave up hundreds of hours of their own time to make sure the event was a huge success.

Ms Wiles said: “The turnout and support exceeded our already high expectations and the success of the event demonstrates what can be achieved when the businesses in the village work together.

“Charlotte and I thank everybody who was a part of the event and we welcome any feedback as we are already starting work on next year’s event.”

Ms Bourne added: “We were so overwhelmed by the fantastic support of Highgate’s businesses and residents who contributed to making the event such a huge success.

“Everyone thoroughly enjoy the afternoon and evening immensely and the atmosphere was amazing.

“Thank you to everyone who supported festival.”

Mince pies and tea were provided by tea shop High Tea of Highgate, while the Angel Inn pub supplied mulled wine.

The newly opened Le Pain Quotidien gave away free hot chocolate and pasties while Gus Bodur sold hot roasted chestnuts to the sound of the Rogues Gallery band which played live music.

Children made a wish as they released balloons into the air to support the Alexandra Wylie Tower Foundation, a charity set up in memory of Channing School pupil Alexandra Wylie, who died at the age of 17 from cancer.

The evening’s sponsors included Highgate music legend George Michael, Highgate Hospital, Streathers Solicitors Highgate LLP, and Goldschmidt and Howland.

Latest Stories from SNAP.PA

After an unsuccessful independence campaign, Alex Salmond will step down as First Minister and SNP leader.

Read more

Chart star Tinchy Stryder has released a video and photos showing he is working on music with the Chuckle Brothers.

Read more

People have taken to Twitter to mock how beautifully innocent the Peterborough Telegraph review is.

Read more

Quirky London

Quizzes

(Photo by Ben Horton/Getty Images for Madame Tussauds Hollywood)

If there’s one thing that can change Londoners from nice, normal people into superhumans capable of extreme levels of rage and passive aggression, it’s the descent below-ground.

Read more
Do you fancy yourself as a football ground know-it-all? Try our devilishly difficult quiz!

How well do you know your football stadiums? This brand new quiz from London24 will seperate the men from the boys...

Read more
Do you know your Thames truths from the porkie pies? (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

So, you live (or work) in London, and you think you know the river well.

Read more