FOLLOWING the release of her Christmas album Upon A Winter’s Night, folk singer Cara Dillion never saw what was coming next.

The record was such a success that the inevitable tour followed. Fast forward three years and Dillion’s Christmas concert has become an annual fixture on the festive calendar.

“It has become a bit of a tradition from something that we never expected it to,” the Irish singer told The Gazette.

“I think a lot of people can’t believe that what we do isn’t just all the cheesy Christmas songs and that has helped us in a huge way.”

The demand for the show has come as some what of a surprise for the 43-year-old, but one that she has embraced and has been amazed by the reception she has received.

She added: “I think a lot of people can’t believe that it isn’t just all the cheesy Christmas songs. They tell us that they never really knew what to expect but come away enjoying the experience and apparently wanting more.

“It is such a compliment when people are saying that and asking for us to come back next year.”

As well as Dillon’s festive concert becoming a tradition for the audience, it is also becoming a regular event in the singer’s household.

Being on tour with husband and long-time collaborator Sam Lakeman, it also means she gets to enjoy the festivities on the road with him and their three children.

“For the last run of shows on this tour we will take the kids out with us,” the Northern Irish singer continues.

“They [the children] are very musical as well and they are really excited to potentially play on stage with us like they did last year.

“So, it is sort of becoming a bit of a family tradition and long may it last because we are all just having a great time of it at the moment.”

Away from all the festive antics, Dillion and Lakeman are starting to lay the ground work for the follow-up record to the 2017 release Wanderer.

Dillion is also set to reconnect with her fans in China in March next year, where she has developed quite the following.

She said: “This will be my sixth time going over there and it is a really big deal over there.

“We realised that my first album was being used in the curriculum out there to help youngsters to learn English, which is strange as I’m from Northern Ireland and have a weird accent.

“It is a bit strange having these Chinese fans coming up to me with a bit of an Irish twang.”

Cara Dillon, Upon a Winter's Night will be performed at the Haymarket on December 20.