RAIN and winds failed to dampen the festive spirits in Dawlish as the town marked the start of its Christmas celebrations.

The mayor of Dawlish, Cllr Lisa Mayne, performed the official lights switch on Friday evening which was heralded by a lantern parade through the town.

Choirs led the community carol singing and there was accompaniment from Torbay Brass Band.

The town council-organised weekend of events was hampered by Saturday’s wet weather,  however, stalls and entertainment were moved inside to the Strand Centre while a face painter was set up at the library.

On Sunday the Christmas market was in full swing with up to 70 festive stalls in the town centre.

Father Christmas was in attendance as was Scrooge and the Ghost of Christmas Present with a festive present walkabout.

Live music was provided by Chris Ostler and Torbay Brass Band.

Other entertainment included balloon modelling, Punch and Judy and face painting.

The event was described as providing a ‘great community spirit’, a lovely event and having a ‘lovely atmosphere’.