Celebrate the ho-ho-holidays in style! SW Londoner picks top ten Christmas events for festive fun

Oh the weather outside is frightful but we’ve got a list that’s delightful, and we’ve found a place to go, let it snow let it snow let it snow!

With the festive season kicking off in style, lights twinkling in windows and the rat pack crooning at you from every shop, here at SW Londoner we’re in the mood for some Christmas capers and festive fun.

Sneak another chocolate out of your advent calendar, don your jolliest jumpers and join us in dreaming of a white Christmas as we explore the 10 best Christmas events happening around SW London.

Oh no it’s not! Oh yes it is, coming in at number one is a classic panto! We’re looking forward to Cinderella at the New Wimbledon Theatre, featuring a star-studded line up headed by Dallas diva Linda Gray.

Linda Gray Dallas pantomime pic credit Craig Sugden

With sumptuous sets, gorgeous fairytale costumes, big song and dance numbers and even real Shetland ponies, fun and laughter are guaranteed for the whole family.

It might not be the cathedral, but St Paul’s Church in Knightsbridge will be hosting carols by candlelight as three choirs guide the audience through beautiful gospel pieces in our second Christmas pick.

Sir Michael Parkinson and Zoë Wanamaker will read at the service and with mulled wine and mince pies on offer, you’ll feel suitably festive and full of goodwill as money raised from tickets will go to charity.

St Paul's Twickenham flickr Friar Lawrence Lew OP

Hopefully the saints won’t come marching in for our third choice, perfect post-Christmas pick-me-up for any sport fans, Harlequins vs Aviva Premiership champions Northampton Saints.

Now in its seventh year the ‘Big Game’ is not only a high quality rugby fixture but a great day out – in previous years Olly Murs and Sam Bailey have performed at half time.

Our fourth choice brings centuries of history with a modern twist for a new idea of Christmas fun – wander round the famous Hampton Court grounds at night following the maze trail decked with spectacular responsive lights to bring the surrounding trees to life.

Seasonal food and drinks are available so why not get the family down to the river?


On the fifth day of SWL’s Christmas slide down to London’s coolest festive destination and skate on the full size urban rink located in Vauxhall’s Pleasure Gardens.

With hot chocolate, mulled wine and various food outlets to warm you up there’s no need to feel the chill this Christmas.

Christmas Vauxhall Rink 1

Choices six and seven bring song to Cadogan Hall as Europe’s biggest male voice choir present an advent calendar countdown to Christmas in a follow up to their sell-out Make Mine a Snowball last year.

The world-renowned Choir of Westminster Abbey will also make a rare performance away from the Abbey to present a range of rich and varied Christmas carols in the plush Chelsea venue.

In at eight is Twickenham’s popular French Market, offering visitors the chance to add traditional French cuisine to their Christmas menu.

German markets may be du jour but the French are just as fancy. Shoppers can indulge their sweet tooth with classic French desserts or even find a handcrafted gift at one of the stalls.

Christmas teapot

Number nine brings a more welcome chill than the wintery nights. Coors Light brings an Ice Bar and ‘Damme cold refreshment’ to Brixton and will offer beer and a range of fresh rocky mountain cocktails.

The bar promises brilliant DJ sets, air hockey and the chance to get photos taken by a special guest photographer…

Last, but certainly not least, the fat man himself crowns our Christmas list at number 10.

With the big day fast approaching kids are frantically compiling their wish lists for Santa and dreaming of the perfect gift, let them tell old St Nick themselves at Bentalls’ famous grotto in Kingston.

1. Cinderella, New Wimbledon Theatre
5 December – 11 January, 2015
Ticket prices: £10 – £39.50

2. Carols by Candlelight, St. Paul’s Church, Knightsbridge
3 December, 7pm
Ticket prices: Adults £15 + booking fee, children £10 + booking fee

3. Big Game 7 Harlequins v Northampton Saints, Twickenham Stadium
27 December, 3pm
Ticket prices: Adults from £15, Children from £5

4. Light up the Palace, Hampton Court Palace
12 – 23 December, 5 – 8 pm
Ticket prices: Adults £10, Children £5, HRP member £5.
Entry at 4.30pm is free with a valid palace ticket for the day

5. Ice Skate Vaxhall
21 December – 4 January 2015
Sunday to Thursday 11am – 8pm (last public skate)
Friday and Saturday from 11am – 9pm (last public skate)
Ticket prices: £8.50 – £12

6. Calendar Boys! London Gay Men’s Choir, Cadogan Hall
5-6 December, 7.30pm
Ticket prices: £15 – £38

7. The Choir of Westminster Abbey. Cadogan Hall
11 December, 7.30pm
Ticket prices: £18 – £30

8. French Market, Church Street Twickenham
5 – 7 December, 10am – 8pm

9. Coors Light Ice Bar, Windrush Square Brixton
13 – 18 December, 12pm – 11pm

10. Bentalls’ Grotto, Kingston
29 November – 24 December
Free (or pay £3.95 to receive a gift)

Picture of Linda Gray via Craig Sugden, with thanks
Picture of St Paul’s Twickenham via Friar Lawrence Lew OP, with thanks
Picture of Christmas market craft via Dan Zelazo, with thanks

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