Tumble into Alice's Wonderland

For the people of Tyneside, it is the moment that marks the start of Christmas. Everyone will tell you that the Fenwick Newcastle window display is as much a tradition as carol singers and mulled wine.

This year a record number turned out to press their noses against the glass in Northumberland Street as the 43rd animated Christmas window was unveiled.

Many had been queuing for hours, but as the black curtains were pulled from the windows, there was rapturous applause.

The enchanting display featured all of the familiar faces from the Lewis Carroll classic, Alice in Wonderland; a spinning Queen of Hearts, a tea party on playing cards, a moving caterpillar, a chequer-board floor and even a rabbit disappearing down the rabbit hole.

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But it was the looks of delight that said it all.

Alice and the White Queen - both on stilts - entertained the crowds, as artificial snow tumbled from the sky.

The windows have become a festive tradition for families in the north east, with people coming for decades and bringing their children and grandchildren. The store also receives letters from fans overseas to find out the theme so they don’t miss out.

The largest Christmas window outside of London, the store created its first animations in 1971, inspired by a moving window in a department store in Paris.

Now approaching a half-century of tableaus, it is more popular than ever. Why not watch the production team working tirelessly to put the whole window together in our special time-lapse video and see more images of the magical window itself below.

By Claire Brayford