DRINKERS raised a glass as Southampton welcomed a gin festival in the heart of the city.

The Great Southampton Gin Festival came to the Guildhall, with hundreds descending on the event to sample more than 120 different gins from around the world.

The "garden party" style event, organised by Gin Festivals UK and sponsored by Franklin and Sons, was split into afternoon and evening sessions and featured live music to keep people in the spirit.

There were talks and presentations by gin producers, cocktail demonstrations, trade stands, and punters were able to enjoy their beverages in a relaxed seating area.

Clint Jones, one of the event's hosts, said: " It's a beautiful venue, the weather is phenomenal, and the people here have impeccable taste in dress and in gin.

"So we are really happy with it."

In just over three months, Gin Festivals UK has hosted the festival at 17 different venues across the country, with more than 15,000 people attending.

For those new to the world of gin or looking to try something different from their usual, a complimentary GinBible, listing more than 100 gins, helped attendees decide what to choose from the bar.

Guests also received free goodie bags and the trade stands were selling bottles for guests to take home.

Leanne, 26, a transport planner from Hedge End, who attended the event with her friend Sarah, 28, said: "We're having a great time. We are here for an early birthday celebration and it's a great idea for Southampton to have events like this."

Louise Hopkins, 41, a financial control administrator from Salisbury, said: "My husband is a really big fan so that's why we came today. We are trying a few little samples of everything really. It's been a lovely day so far."