AN Alice in Wonderland masquerade ball and martial arts devised for Victorian gentlemen were some of the many highlights of a steampunk festival this weekend.

Whitby Steampunk Weekend kicked off on Friday, when a masquerade ball with the theme of Alice in Wonderland was held at the Met Lounge and Ballroom on Whitby’s West Cliff.

The following evening a Steampunk Cabaret Evening at Whitby Pavilion Theatre featured acts such as Victor and the Bully, Captain of the Lost Waves and Lady Violet Hugh.

During the day, visitors could experience Bartitsu demonstrations, a form of self-defence developed in 1898 for Victorian gentlemen involving walking canes mixed with Jujitsu boxing.

There was also a steampunk steamstress workshop by Faye Clement, a talk by author Leesa DeVantier on vampires, a talk by the British Paranormal Society and “tea and pistol duelling”.

Some of the many other demonstrations, performances and talks included a performance by “Victorian beat poet” Paul Voodini and a look at the Victorian fascination with Whitby jet.

People had travelled from up and down the country for the weekend event and many gathered together for a promenade along, where they displayed their flamboyant costumes, many inspired by Victorian and Edwardian science fiction writing of Jules Verne and HG Wells.