More than 3,000 people flooded through the doors of Clacton Pier as the festive season got off to a flying start.

They were treated to the new Christmas Village with wooden cabins offering a variety of food and drink and more than 100 children and adults sat down to Breakfast with Santa.

Santa’s grotto was busy throughout and many people took advantage of the pier’s Christmas Cracker deal, which includes dodgems, golf, and the seaquarium with either bowling or soft play.

Nigel Brown, the pier’s communications manager, said: “Our goal is to provide the ultimate festive experience for all the family with something to suite everyone.

“We got off to a fantastic start and our bookings are ahead of last year already. We expect a busy Christmas period and the feedback we have received so far has been very positive.”

The new village has been created in the Parade between Discovery Bay soft play and the Prize Factory amusement arcade.

The cabins are selling crepes, waffles, fudge, sweets, hot chocolate, sausages and there is a bar with winter warmers and beer for the adults.

The event runs through until January 5.