WILLIAM HAGUE left the cut and thrust of Westminster politics behind at the weekend to enjoy produce from his North Yorkshire constituency. The former Tory leader helped out at Richmond's monthly farmers' market, distributing hot drinks among more than 20 stallholders appearing as popular pantomime characters.

The mayor, Councillor Tom Burrows, also addressed the crowds, congratulating farmers on the success and popularity of their home-grown produce.

Mr Hague also drew the three winning raffle tickets and presented Christmas hampers donated by local farmers as prizes.

The winning hamper, worth £50, went to Mary Hustwick who lives in Frenchgate, Richmond. Proceeds were in aid of the Royal Agricultural Benefit Institute