FESTIVE spirit filled the air as the dockyard was teleported back in time.
The Victorian Festival of Christmas attracted thousands of families to the Historic Dockyard over the weekend.
Steve Marrufo, 39, from Elson, Gosport, was with his wife Anna, 33, and his son Lorenzo, two.
He said: ‘I work here and I cycle through it all the time.
‘It’s nice to see it with the whole community together – we come here every year.
‘It’s always nice – there’s always something different.’
There was something for all with mulled wine, Victorian characters and a street covered with snow.
Stacey Westbrook, 28, from Baffins, Portsmouth, was with her husband Dale, 31, and sons Harry, one, and Ollie, four.
Ollie said: ‘I liked the Frozen bit, it was good.’
His mum Stacey added: ‘We brought them down to get in the Christmas spirit.
‘We’ve put our decorations up on Friday ready.’
The popular annual event drew people from across the area – putting a major strain on routes into the city and on local roads.
Huge queues of people were reported at the Portsmouth City Council-run park and ride off the M275.
But actors in their finest period costumes turned visitors back to a much simpler time.
Tiny James Littlejohn delighted the crowds in his role as Michael Banks in Mary Poppins.
The six-year-old, whose mum Helen, 47, was playing Mary Poppins, said: ‘Christmas is awesome.’
Helen, who was with the group of actors and actresses from the Groundlings throughout the dockyard, said: ‘This is the first time at the festival.
‘It gives them that confident to perform in front of a group of people and to mix with other people.’
Also pleasing the crowds was re-enactor Julie Baines, 56, from the Royal Sussex Living History group.
She said: ‘It’s amazing. My outfit is based on the infantry. It’s a new one.’