Things to do this Christmas with the National Trust !
The Night Before Christmas
24 November – 2 January, house open 11am – 4pm, outdoor trail 10am – 4pm, normal admission charge plus £1 per trail.
Scenes from the much-loved poem, ‘The Night Before Christmas’, are brought to life at Mottisfont. Discover the children asleep in their beds, and a magnificent Christmas tree laden with decorations and presents. Unlike the poem, the mice are definitely stirring here –look out for them in nooks and crannies around the house. You’ll find that Dasher, Dancer, Prancer and Vixen have landed Father Christmas’s sleigh outside, and in the gardens an activity trail offers seasonal fun challenges, from Santa’s sack race to throwing presents down a chimney. There are simple activities for tiny tots too.
Closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day
Hinton Ampner’s Christmas Murder Mystery and Christmas Pudding mystery family trail
House offer: 1 – 24 December, house open 11am – 3.30pm, booking essential online or call 0344 249 1895, normal admission charge.
Family trail: 1 December – 1 January, 10am – 4pm, normal admission charge plus £2 per child
Owner Ralph Dutton’s glamorous Christmas house party is in full swing. But, foul play is afoot! Wander through rooms dressed in sparkling vintage decorations and stunning floral arrangements to find out ‘who done it’, with the help of Inspector Grey. Outside you’ll find a traditional sweet shop and festive activities for kids. You can also help Inspector Grey’s dog Albert find the Christmas pudding thief, on Hinton’s festive family mystery trail through the gardens.
Closed Christmas Day and Boxing Day.
Uppark House and Garden
The Twelve Days of Christmasand The Twelve Days of Christmas trail
House offer: 1 December – 1 January, 11am – 3.30pm, normal admission charge.
Family trail: 1 December – 1 January, 10am – 3.30pm, normal admission charge plus £2 per child
This winter, ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas’ come alive at Uppark. You’ll find beautifully dressed rooms inspired by this classic song, from ‘Nine ladies dancing’ to ‘Seven swans a-swimming’. Paper artist Delicarta returns with more amazing creations made entirely from paper, alongside gorgeous decorations handmade by Uppark’s talented staff and volunteers. Outside, families can get stuck in to an interactive trail based on the ’Twelve Days’ theme. Join Alder Valley Brass Band on Sunday 16 December for some festive carolling as you make your way through the property.
Closed Christmas Day and Boxing Day.
A Victorian Christmas at The Vyne and A Christmas Carol family trail
House offer: 1 December – 1 January, house open 11am – 3pm, normal admission charge.
Family trail: 1 December – 1 January, 10am – 4.30pm, normal admission charge plus £1 per child
The Vyne’s Victorian owner Wiggett Chute invites you to join his family for Christmas. Fully re-opened after a two year roof project, you’ll find The Vyne’s historic rooms dressed in all the splendour of a Victorian family Christmas. Outside, a trail takes families on A Christmas Carol adventure. Inspired by Charles Dickens’s much loved festive tale, A Christmas Carol, we’re inviting you to take part in our Ebenezer Scrooge personality test. Follow the trail around the grounds to find out just how much of a meanie you are; do you spend Christmas counting your money, or eating figgy pudding? Tot up your score at the end to find out!
Closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day
Winchester City Mill
Christmas holiday trail
15 – 24 December, 10am-3pm, normal admission charge.
Every day this holiday, take a journey through the Mill following the trail of clues left by Father Christmas himself. Older children’s keen eyes will enjoy the challenge of rounding up his herd of reindeer to claim a prize. For younger children there’s a chance to hunt for elves who are sneaking around the Mill.
Alder Valley Brass Band Christmas carols
15 December, 12 – 3pm, normal admission charge only
Enjoy the merry sounds of this popular local brass band as they play favourite Christmas carols in the courtyard. You’re invited to join in too, plus there’s mulled wine and mince pies to keep out the chill.
Closed from Christmas Day to 31 December (inclusive)
Sandham Memorial Chapel
Christmas wreath-making workshop
2 December, 1 – 3pm, £24, book on 0344 249 1895, suitable for age 12+
Create your own beautiful Christmas wreath using fresh greenery and traditional decorations. You’ll receive lots of handy tips on this session, including how to work with different types of foliage, and techniques for wiring fir cones, and cinnamon sticks for a lovely scented arrangement. Leave Sandham’s peaceful surroundings with a unique wreath for your home this Christmas.
Decopatch for Christmas
7 Dec,1.45 – 4pm, £22.50, book on 0344 249 1895
Learn the art of decopatch with local artist Helen Mortimer. You’ll use beautiful papers to transform items into unique Christmas decorations – great to give as gifts, or to display in your own home.
Festive papercraft workshop
7 December 11am – 12.45pm, £12, book on 0344 249 1895
Work with local artist Helen Mortimer and learn how to fold, cut and layer paper to create unique gift cards and a small 3-dimensional object such as a box There’s a chance to develop skills in stamping, die cutting and embossing too.
Christmas service, with handbell ringing
12 December, 11am – 12pm, no need to book but space is limited. Donations welcome
Sandham is a working chapel, having been dedicated on March 25th 1927 by the Bishop of
Guildford. Its incredible Stanley Spencer murals make it a very special place in which to worship, and it regularly hosts services to mark events such as Remembrance Day and Christmas. This year is no exception, and on 12 December you can join a special festive service which will include carols rung by the village’s handbell ringers.
Open Fri – Sun in November and until 16 December
Foxbury, New Forest
Foxbury Forest School Christmas Special
25 November, 10am – 12pm, first child £10, siblings £5, book on 01794 344020
A Christmas special Forest School in Foxbury’s basecamp. As well as cooking on campfires, making wild art and making dens, children will get the chance to make lots of Christmas gifts and decorations. Such as wooden reindeer, bird feeders and tree decorations, using natural material from Foxbury itself, and children will get experience of tool use in a safe environment.
2 December, 10am – 3pm, no charge, book a place on 01794 344020
Help us create a new woodland for the Forest’s wildlife. We have 20,000 trees to plant by 2020 so we need a bit of help!
Mompesson House, Salisbury
The Christmas House
Thursday to Sunday from 25 November – 17 December, 11am – 3.30pm, normal admission charge.
At ‘The Christmas House’ you can find out how Mompesson’s previous inhabitants celebrated the festive season, from a Regency Christmas in the dining room, right through to 1950s festivities in the library. Beautiful floral and winter foliage decorations dress parts of the house, and you’ll find delicious mince pies and mulled wine in the garden tea-room. There’s an animal-themed festive trail for kids too, taking them around the house. Upstairs, peep through doorways to see how rooms have been ‘put to bed’ for the winter. On selected days there’s conservation-in-action too, as Mompesson’s house team clean the precious Turnbull glass collection. In the shop you’ll find a 50s-inspired festive theme and a wonderful assortment of gifts for all ages and to suit all pockets.
Open Thurs – Sun until 23 December (inclusive)
For more Christmas inspiration visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk/hampshire
Share your National Trust Christmas traditions on Instagram using #southeastnt @southeastnt
PLUS …….Win a family ticket (2 Adults 2 Children OR 1 Adult 3 Children) for a family day pass to Mottisfont can be used for Mottisfont Christmas or to visit in 2019! | MLG Gazettes as part of our 12 DAYS OF Christmas Competition Bonanza – to find out more click here
Main Photo: Hinton Ampner at Christmas, © National Trust Images, Oskar Proctor