It’s getting dark at five, the leaves are falling off the trees, scarfs are officially out of hibernation and with the festive decorations displayed around town, the countdown to Christmas has finally begun.
With independent shops, regency architecture and the countryside on the doorstep there’s no wonder why people visit Cheltenham; last year there was a 35% increase of visitors in November & December. Now that the busy Christmas period has started, here are some key events happening in Cheltenham to get you in the festive spirt:
CHRISTMAS LIGHTS SWITCH ON
After the success of last year, the Christmas Lights Switch On is back, and its bigger than ever. On Saturday
From mulled wine to candles you’ll be able to grab all your gifts (or just a treat for yourself) at the Christmas markets this year. The Promenade will host the Christmas Market from Thursday
A selection of everyone’s favourite feel-good festive films are being screened at the Princess Hall and Bacon Theatre to get you ready for Christmas, here’s what’s on:
- ‘Elf’ at Princess Hall, Cheltenham Ladies College on 24thNovember (£11-£13) https://www.alfrescofilm.co.uk/events/elf-pg-princess-hall/
- ‘Love Actually’ at Princess Hall, Cheltenham Ladies College on 24thNovember (£13) https://www.alfrescofilm.co.uk/events/love-actually-15-princess-hall/
- ‘Polar Express’ at Bacon Theatre on 17thDecember (£7) https://bacontheatre.ticketsolve.com/shows/873607775
- ‘Love Actually’ at Bacon Theatre on 17thDecember (£9) https://bacontheatre.ticketsolve.com/shows/873607776
- ‘It’s A Wonderful Life’ at Bacon Theatre on 18thDecember (£9) https://bacontheatre.ticketsolve.com/shows/873607777
LATE NIGHT SHOPPING
On Thursday 5thDecember, Cheltenham town centre will stay open until 8pm, with some shops running activities. Carol singers and other performers will be out on the streets making it a very merry evening.
THE JOY OF CHRISTMAS
Music and readings will be performed by the Jubilate Chamber Choir with guests including the University of Gloucestershire & Community Choir at The Joy of Christmas concert, that is in aid of WellChild. Hear them at St Matthew’s Church on Saturday 7thDecember. (£8-£12)
A NIGHT AT THE THEATRE
Along with the festive film screenings, the Bacon Theatre has many other Christmas events on offer, here are a few of them:
- ‘Christmas at the Musicals’, Mary-Jess and Joanna Forest are joined by The Pauline Quirke Academy Cheltenham to sing all the festive songs you know and love, see them on Friday 13thDecember (£20)
- ‘A Christmas Carol’, this classic Christmas story is brought to life on stage with the critically-acclaimed theatre company Chapterhouse on Saturday 14thDecember (£11-£16)
- ‘The Winter’s Tale’, a screening of Shakespeare’s romantic tragicomedy staring Dame Judi Dench and Sir Kenneth Branagh will be shown on Saturday 21stDecember (£12.50-£16.50)
THE SNOWMAN AND PETER AND THE WOLF
Watching Raymond Briggs’ ‘The Snowman’ is a nationwide Christmas tradition and there’s no better way than seeing it accompanied by The Mozart Symphony Orchestra. To make the night even more magical, you’ll be able to watch Prokofiev’s ‘Peter and The Wolf’. This one-day only event will be on Monday 23rdDecember at the Cheltenham Town Hall. (£10-£30)
The holidays can often do more harm than good to the environment so the stalls at the Christmas Gift and Taster Fayre will show you how gifts can be just as good (or better) when they’re made using eco-friendly and upcycled materials. Head down to the Isbourne on Tuesday 3rdDecember and get a free mince pie and mulled wine upon entry. (£3)
CHRISTMAS DAY SWIM
What’s your Christmas day tradition? Walking the dog? Falling into a food coma before midday? Why not make a Christmas Day swim a tradition this year and head down to Sanford Parks Lido from 10:45am!
Enjoy everything Cheltenham has on offer this festive season and have a very Merry Christmas!