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What’s on in Norfolk in December

PUBLISHED: 15:08 26 November 2018 | UPDATED: 15:09 26 November 2018

Molly Naylor (photo: Robin Mair)

Molly Naylor (photo: Robin Mair)

Robin Mair

We have gathered some of the top events from around the county this month


Enjoy a Christmas fayre, from the creators of the Royal Norfolk Show, at Norwich Cathedral.



More than 130 stalls join the permanent shops and café for a festive market. Artisans and producers will be in three large marquees, a food court and more stalls outside, in the barn and courtyard and over at St Mary’s, alongside the church’s own fund-raising café. For its 10th anniversary, the market will be supporting local charities.

Enjoy the choirs and musicians – and a Christmas jumper flash mob at 2pm on Sunday.

10am to 5pm each day.

• ART FAIR EAST (to 2nd)

The East of England’s biggest art event returns to Norwich from November 30 to December 2. More than 200 artists will be showing painting, prints, photography, sculpture, mixed media and more at St Andrew’s Hall. Artists and organisers Will Teather and Brian Korteling select the exhibitors, with

new faces this year including Norfolk’s Lucy Loveheart and her magical pictures.

Admission £3.50, £3 concessions, accompanied under 14s free.

• TREE FESTIVAL (1st to 9th)

Find a forest of festive trees at St Mary’s Church, Stalham, from 10am (midday on Sundays) to 4pm. See trees decorated by schools, clubs, businesses and groups.

Admission free.


The Cromer Pier Christmas Show features entertainer Olly Day with magician and comic Mark James and lots of music and festive sparkle at the Pavilion Theatre.


Pensthorpe Natural Park has daily floodlit feeds for birds at 4pm throughout December and January. Watch from the warmth of a viewing gallery as the birds gather in the Wensum Valley. Included in admission price or £3 for adults and £2 for children, for floodlit feed only.

A Winter’s Tail, from December 19 to January 2 encourages families to explore Pensthorpe’s natural habitats, learn enchanting stories about animals that hibernate, those that adapt to handle the cold, and those that take long and adventurous journeys to warmer climes. Includes crafts and a winter-inspired self-guided trail through the reserve. Included in admission price.

Pensthorpe Natural Park, near Fakenham, open daily except Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day, 10am-5pm.

Adults £11.95, seniors £10.95, children £10.95, under threes free. 01328 851465

• ADVENT AND MORE (1st, 16th and 24th)

Enjoy an Advent market and celebration at Walpole St Peter’s Church on December 1, 2-4.30pm. Stalls, barbecue, and refreshments – plus Christmas tree lighting and carol singing at 4pm. Free entry. On Sunday 16, enjoy carols by candlelight with mince pies afterwards. The Christmas midnight service is from 11.30pm on December 24.

Walpole St Peter’s Church, Church Road, PE14 7NS

• MUSIC (5th and 6th)

Hear seasonal and classical songs performed by Hayley Moss and Benjamin Lake at Hoveton St John Church, in aid of church funds, at 7pm both evenings. Tickets for the Christmas concerts are £12.50, including mulled wine or a soft drink and festive refreshments, available from Roger and Sarah Tomkins on 01692 630892.

• ALL SHOOK UP (7th onwards)

See 20 portraits of Elvis tribute acts by Stuart Pearson Wright at the Fairhurst Gallery. One of Britain’s most celebrated portrait painters will feature drawings of tribute acts from across the country. Stuart’s previous subjects have included JK Rowling, the Duke of Edinburgh, John Hurt, Keira Knightly, Alan Rickman, Ben Wishaw, Sir Ian McKellen, Daniel Radcliffe and Sir Michael Gambon.

The exhibition runs until February 2, Tuesday to Saturday, 9.30am-5.30pm.

• MINSTER TREES (7th – 16th)

More than 50 trees, decorated by individuals, businesses, schools and groups, will be on show alongside beautiful crib scenes at Great Yarmouth Minster Christmas Tree and Crib Festival.

10am- 3pm. Admission adults £2, children free.


Enjoy a seasonal evening of rhymes, readings and carols at St Peter and St Paul’s church, Main Road, Filby, 6.30pm for 7pm.

Admission £5 adults, £2 children.


Hear dance-along interpretations of Winter Wonderland, Baby It’s Cold Outside, Santa Claus is Coming to Town and many more with the band Jazz at The Movies, at The Hoste, Burnham Market. A three-course meal, music and dancing, from 7pm to late, is £55, or £15 for just the music.

• SEASONAL SNAPE )7th-16th and 21st-23rd)

A cast of 100, a live orchestra and dazzling costumes and effects are promised as the Co-op Juniors perform The Nutcracker at Snape Maltings from December 7-16.

The Snape Maltings Christmas Weekend features music for all the family including Handel’s Messiah, a Christmas sing-along of festive hits and Irish folk singer Cara Dillon. Christmas classic The Snowman returns to the Concert Hall – experience the magic on a big screen accompanied by live orchestra.

• CHRISTMAS CIRCUS (8th to January 6th)

Circus performers from across the world, plus swimmers and dancers, star in the Hippodrome Christmas Spectacular Circus in the beautiful Great Yarmouth Hippodrome.

• CAROLS (8th)

The Framingham Earl Singers Christmas Concert of traditional carols with audience participation is at The Central Baptist Church, Duke Street, Norwich, from 7.30pm. Tickets including festive refreshments, £10 in advance, £12 on the door, under 16s free.


Hear good tidings of great joy at the annual Christmas concert at Canaan Christian Centre, Holt Road, Sheringham at 3pm.

Marilyn Baker, a blind singer/songwriter, will lead the concert with Tracy Williamson, and their guide and hearing dogs. All welcome, seasonal refreshments.

• WELLS WINTER MARKET (8th and 9th)

The new Wells Maltings will be hosting a winter market, 10am-5pm on Saturday and 11am-4pm on Sunday. Stalls at the festive fair will include jewellery, woodwork, glassware, paintings, pottery, plants and more from around East Anglia, mulled wine, a band playing carols and a fairground organ.

Admission free. Wells Maltings, Staithe Street, Wells-next-the-Sea.

• WREATHS AND WALKS (8th and 12th)

Make a Christmas wreath to hang on your door from fresh foliage, natural woodland materials and dried ingredients and ribbons. The workshops at Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden, run from 10am to noon and 1.30-3.30pm on December 8 and 10am to noon on December 12. All materials supplied – bring secateurs and an apron.

£25 per person (£20 members) including festive refreshments. Booking essential.

On Boxing Day take a guided walk around the gardens, 11am to 12.30pm. Learn about the history of Fairhaven, its plants and organic working methods.

Tickets: adult £6.85, concessions £6.60, children £3.95, under 5s free. Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden, School Road, South Walsham NR13 6DZ. 01603 270449 or at


Hear the Norwich Philharmonic Orchestra perform music by American composers including Bernstein and Gershin - finishing with Gershwin’s An American in Paris, complete with taxi horns in the correct key.

St Andrew’s Hall, Norwich, 7.30pm.


Special guests Nina Nannar of ITV News, and Helen Linehan, creator of BBC hit Motherland, will join the line-up of people telling personal stories on the theme of ‘heroes.’ Hear true stories for a cold winter’s night hosted by poet and performer Molly Naylor. Stories at the monthly evenings range from heart-warming to revealing, and funny to sad.

Norwich Arts Centre, St Benedict’s, 7.30pm. Pay what you can. 01603 660352.


White Christmas the Musical is based on the movie, and features 17 Irving Berlin songs. Fakenham and District Light Operatic Society will be performing this heartwarming musical. Fakenham Community Centre.


A short lunch-break carol service at St Andrew’s Church, Norwich, next to Cinema City, begins at 1.05pm and finishes with mince pies, sausage rolls and other refreshments.

Admission and refreshments free.


See an Italian Christmas tradition as Lost in Translation Circus brings The Baron in the Trees – a Christmas Circus Spectacular to Norwich. Inspired by an Italian children’s book, the show will feature high flying aerial stunts, amazing acrobatics, slapstick poetry, juggling and live music.

The Oak Circus Centre, Norwich, 6.30pm daily. Tickets £10 adults, £6 children, £28 family.


Norwich Philharmonic’s family Christmas concert promises a light-hearted evening of seasonal favourites. St Andrew’s Hall, Norwich, 7.30pm.

• R&B (19th)

Hear Alexander O’Neal at the Waterfront, Norwich. The soul and rhythm and blues singer, whose career includes working with Prince and having several top 10 singles, has fans around the world and across the decades.

01603 508050.

• ST MARY CHRISTMAS (19th - 20th)

Start the Christmas week with a concert by candlelight of choral and popular Christmas songs – plus surprises.

Each of the St Mary’s Singers Christmas Carol Concerts starts at 7.30pm. Admission £6 includes mulled wine and mince pie. St Mary the Virgin church, The Street, Hemsby.


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