Birmingham's Frankfurt Christmas Market: Find out more about this year's event
Birmingham's renowned Frankfurt Christmas Market opens to crowds today to herald the festive season in the city.
Tens of thousands of people are expected to visit Birmingham during the event’s five-week run until December 23.
The festive aroma of hot gluhwein, schnitzel and spicy sausage will be filling New Street and Victoria Square for the annual attraction
Here's all you need to know about Birmingham's German feast-ival
When does it open?
Deputy Lord Mayor of Birmingham, Councillor John Lines, will officially open the market at 5.30pm.
Where are the stalls and what times are they open?
Stalls run along New Street from the Bullring all the way up to Victoria Square.
They are open from 10am to 9pm daily.
What can you buy?
Traders offer a range of traditional goods and gifts, such as handcrafted decorations, toys and jewellery.
There's also a selection of food and drink. From pretzels and schnitzels to bratwurst and roasted almonds, there's plenty to tempt the tastebuds.
Plus you can raise a glass of glühwein or weissbeer, or hot chocolate, at the range of outdoor.
What entertainment is on offer?
The market's bandstand will feature performances every day from a range of groups, including local acts and choirs on Saturdays and Sundays, and the annual Family Day, when traders offer a range of one-day discounts, will take place on December 9.
How will ongoing works impact the market?
With major redevelopment works continuing in Centenary Square and Paradise Circus the big wheel and ice rink have again been moved to Eastside City Park, near Birmingham City University and Millennium Point.
They will run from Saturday, November 17, until January 6, between 10am and 10pm, except on Christmas Day.
For more information and to book tickets visit www.iceskatebirmingham.co.uk
As like last year, the accompanying Christmas Craft Market has been cancelled due to ongoing works.
People are also advised that ongoing works for the West Midlands Metro extension mean disruption in Pinfold Street.
Train travel advice
A record numbers are expected to travel in and out of the city by train while the market is running.
Last year a record 231,000 people used Birmingham New Street station on the first Saturday after the market opened.
When the market is running it can mean trains and platforms are much busier.
Train passengers are being advised to leave plenty of time to make their journeys, know their last few trains and check before they travel.
As with previous years, queuing systems may be used at exceptionally busy times to safely allow people to board their trains home.
Patrick Power, Network Rail’s station manager at Birmingham New Street, said: “The Christmas market and festive season are great for Birmingham but marks the busiest time of the year for Birmingham New Street station.
“Our advice to passengers is allow extra time to make your train, don’t rely on your last service and check before you travel. There will be extra staff in place across the station to provide advice and information and help keep passengers safe.”
Passengers are also being urged to think ahead and plan their journeys if they will be using the rail network over Christmas.
As part of its Railway Upgrade Plan, Network Rail will be carrying out improvement work across Britain between December 24 and January 2 which may affect journeys.
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