My Favourites heart

My Favourites

Save your favourites with a single click and you’ll never forget a brilliant Muddy recommendation.


Get the inside line on what’s unique, special and new near you, straight to your inbox across 25 counties

Back to This month

Things to do: December


CHRISTMAS EVENT: Christmas at Kew
■ Kew Gardens ■ Now until Sun 5 Jan

Now in its seventh year, the 2019 winter trail at Kew Gardens in Richmond takes a magical new route and includes a host of all-new installations. Framed by glittering spiral trees, dynamic laser projections will illuminate the iconic Temperate House.

FAMILY EVENT: Watts Celtic Christmas Weekend
■ Watts Gallery, Guildford ■ Sat 30 Nov – Sun 1 Dec, 11am – 5pm

Start your festive celebrations with the sights, sounds and smells of our Celtic-themed Christmas Weekend, inspired by Mary Watts’ Celtic crafts. Make Celtic crackers and clay reindeers, head out on the advent calendar trail and take the opportunity to meet Mr Claus himself.

FAMILY EVENT: The Magic of Christmas
■ Chobham Adventure Farm, Chobham ■ Sat 30 Nov – Tues 24 Dec

This immersive 2.5 hour experience will transport your family to a magical place where they’ll learn how to become an official elf helper and get an official elf name, meet real live reindeer, help Mrs Claus decorate gingerbread men, make a teddy bear and finally get their hands on the golden key and meet Father Christmas himself.

FAMILY EVENT: Santa Cruise on the River Wey
■ Millmead Island, Guildford ■ Dates from Sat 30 Nov

Set sail with Santa with a gentle cruise along the River Wey, mince pie and mulled wine in hand and refreshments and gifts for children. All profits raised will support our work of enabling local people to overcome the disadvantage of low skills, poor educational achievement, limited opportunities and tough financial circumstances.

WORKSHOP: Christmas Wreath Making
■ Polesden Lacey ■ Tue 3, Fri 6, Tue 10, Fri 13 and Tue 17 Dec

Bring some of the glories of Polesden into your home this Christmas and make a Christmas wreath using foliage from the grounds inside a festive yurt. The workshop also comes with a glass of mulled wine and a mince pie. Cheers!

MUSIC: Boogie Wonderland
■ Dorking Halls, Dorking ■ Tue 3 Dec

Join this top notch tribute act for a night of classic disco tunes made famous by the likes of Kool and the Gang, Earth, Wind & Fire, The Jacksons and Bee Gees. You’ll be dancing All Night Long!

FAIR: Sandown Antiques Fair
■ Sandown Racecourse, Esher ■ Tues 3 Dec

If you love a good rootle around an antiques fair, your’e going to love the Sandown Antiques Fair at Sandown Racecourse. There are a vast array of stalls selling everything from French farmhouse furniture to antique kitchenalia and jewellery. Admission and parking are free.

MUSIC: Sound of the Sirens
■ The Boileroom, Guildford ■ Thu 5 Dec

Fancy something a bit different? Head to this gritty gig venue to see this female folk rock duo do their thing and gain a few extra fans along the way.

FAMILY EVENTS: Twilight Christmas at Hever Castle
■ Hever Castle, Edenbridge ■ From Fri 6 Dec

Bring your torch and pop on the wellies to see much loved landmarks lit up with glorious colours. Explore the  Christmas trail and meet Alice in Wonderland characters as you wander through illuminated gardens.

EVENT: Glow 2019
■ RHS Garden Wisley, near Woking ■ Sat 7 Dec until 5 Jan

Who doesn’t love an illuminated adventure at this time of year? Wander the brand new route and experience enchanting trail to see dazzling light installations themed around the four seasons.

FESTIVAL: Jingleberry Christmas Party
■ Flower Farm, Godstone ■ Sat 7 Dec

Christmas is coming! – and so is Jingleberry – a giant party night with live music. As well as the music, they’ll be serving up a hog roast and turkey in an ‘all you can eat’ buffet.

FAMILY EVENT: Shivering Snowman Trail
■ Winkworth Arboretum ■ Sat 7 – Mon 23 Dec

Wrap up warm and head out to follow the clues and explore the wintry woodland of Winkworth on this snowman themed trail.

SPORT: Denbies Santa Run
■ Denbies Estate, Dorking ■ Sun 8 Dec

Hundreds of runners dressed as Santa Claus jogging 5k on a cold Sunday morning – what’s not to like? Even better, there’s a mince pie and glass of mulled wine waiting at the finish line.

FOOD EVENT: Christmas Wine Tasting
■ Albury Organic Vineyard, Albury ■ Sun 8 Dec

Taste the flagship Silent Pool Rosé, award-winning sparkling wines, and Albury’s new festive vermouth. The pop-up wine bar will be selling wine by the glass and cocktails, and there will be music from the Godalming Community Gospel Choir.

WORKSHOP: Christmas Flower Arranging
■ Leith Hill Place ■ Mon 9 Dec

Learn the art of flower arranging and make a fantastic Christmas table display for the big day. All materials are included, in addition to a scrumptious festive morning tea!

EVENT CINEMA: ROH Live – Coppélia
■ Cranleigh Arts Centre ■ Tues 10 Dec & Thurs 19 Dec

This classic returns to the Royal Ballet repertory with Ninette de Vallios’ charming and funny Coppélia – a story of love, mischief and mechanical dolls.

MARKET: Sunbury Antiques Fair
■ Kempton Park Racecourse ■ Tues 10 Dec

If you love a good rootle around an antiques fair, you’re going to love the Sunbury Antiques Fair at Kempton Park Racecourse. There are more than 700 stalls (inside and out) selling everything from French farmhouse furniture to antique kitchenalia and jewellery. It opens at 6.30am, and if you want to snavel a bargain, I’d get there early. Admission and parking are free.

MUSIC: Five Star Swing at Christmas
■ Cranleigh Arts Centre ■ Wed 11 Dec

Swing and singalong with the unique Swing Time Christmas show as featured at London’s Leicester Square Theatre. Enjoy all your favourite Christmas songs get the alternative big band treatment, with hits from Glenn Miller, Sinatra and Nat King Cole to name just a few.

COMEDY: Rob Beckett
■ G Live, Guildford ■ Wed 11 Dec

Back with his brand new stand up show, join the ‘mouth from the south’ for what is guaranteed to be hours of laughter!

EVENT: Cellar Murder Mystery Party Night
■ Denbies Estate, Dorking ■ Thu 12 Dec

Who doesn’t love a classic ‘whodunnit?’ Solve the big mystery with the help of a drinks reception, three course meal, coffee and festive nibbles and a DJ and disco once the culprit has been caught!

MUSIC: Cara Dillion: Upon A Winter’s Night
■ Farnham Maltings ■ Fri 13 Dec

One of the most celebrated folk singers to come out of Ireland, Cara and her band will weave celtic and folksy rhythms alongside reverent and atmospheric carols while Cara holds the darkness at bay with the purity of her voice.

WORKSHOP: Winter Wonderland Gingerbread House
■ The Lightbox, Woking ■ Sat 14 Dec

Keen to have a go at gingerbread house making but the kids’ sticky fingers always get in the way? This adult only workshop will teach you all the decorating tips and techniques to enable you to take this family favourite to the next level.

CINEMA: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
■ Everyman Cinema, various locations including Reigate ■ From Sat 14 Dec

Splash out a little extra for your cinema experience to see the newest Star Wars movie, complete with sofa and table service at your seat!

CHILDREN’S EVENT: Visit Mrs Christmas
■ Hatchlands Park, near Guildford ■ Sat 14 Dec

Santa Claus gets all the festive limelight but what about his wonderful wife? Head to Hatchlands Park for a Christmas day out with a twist.

EVENT CINEMA: ROH Live – The Nutcracker
■ Cranleigh Arts Centre ■ Tues 17 Dec

Meaghan Grace Hinkis as Clara in The Nutcracker, The Royal Ballet ©ROH/Tristram Kenton, 2013. Image by AKA ©ROH 2016.

The Royal Ballet’s Nutcracker is the quintessential Christmas experience – and with this encore live performance screening , there’s no need to schlep into London.


MUSIC: Christmas Carol Concert at Clandon
■ Clandon Park, near Guildford ■ Tue 17 Dec

Join  a magical evening with the Oxford Singers at Holy Trinity Church as they herald the start of the festive season. All donations will go to the Clandon Park appeal.

KID EVENT: Wiglet’s Christmas Avenue
■ Godstone Farm, Godstone ■ Wed 18 – Tue 24 Dec

Early booking is essential for this family fun day at the farm. Wander through the magical tunnel with our friendly elves and be guided to meet the man himself, receive a present from the toyshop and decorate Christmas cookies.

■ Rhoda McGaw Theatre, Woking ■ Thurs 19 – Tues 24 Dec

This year the man himself, Santa, comes to Woking with a special stage production of the best-loved story book Dear Santa. Expect Christmas songs and lots of audience participation and there is also the chance to meet and receive an exclusive Christmas gift from Santa himself!

PLAY: Once
■ Ashcroft Playhouse at Fairfield Halls, Croydon ■ Thu 19 Dec – Sat 11 Jan

From the stages of the West End and Broadway, Once tells the uplifting story of two lost souls who unexpectedly fall in love. If you loved the film, you’ll love this!

MUSIC: Happy Mondays
■ G Live, Guildford ■ Fri 20 Dec

The legendary 80s band will be performing all their big hitters on this huge Greatest Hits headline tour.  Jon Dasilva is the support act.

■ The Hawth, Crawley ■ Sat 21 – Sun 22 Dec

When a little boy stumbles across a special star, he puts it in a jar and takes it on adventures. But, the poor star misses its home… Can the little boy and his big sister find a way to send the star safely back? This 50 minute festive play is perfect for your littlest ones!

FOOD: Elizabethan Christmas Cookery
■ Hampton Court Palace ■ Sat 21 Dec – Sun 5 Jan (excluding 24, 25, 26 Dec)

From roast beef and shred pie to spiced marchpane and buttered beer, come and discover how festive food fashions have changed at Elizabeth I’s palace. The event even takes place in Henry VIII’s kitchens!

■ Farnham Maltings ■ Sat 21 – Mon 23 Dec

Join Pixel, Crash and Click for an interactive icy adventure. Sitting amongst the set and performers, the children in the audience play an essential part in helping the three penguin friends on their wintery journey.

CHILDREN’S THEATRE: Reindeer On The Roof by Hodge Podge Theatre
■ Electric Theatre, Guildford ■ Sun 22 Dec

It’s Christmas morning and Darcey wakes up to a sparkly tree, a stocking full of presents and a reindeer on the roof! Join Darcey on her adventure to get her new friend back to Lapland.

MUSIC: The Snowman – London Mozart Players
■ Phoenix Concert Hall, Fairfield Halls, Croydon ■ Mon 23 Dec, 2.30pm

The London Mozart Players perform the full orchestral score of this iconic Christmas film live-to-picture in a pre-Christmas treat that’s perfect for the whole family.

DANCE: St Petersburg Classic Ballet – The Nutcracker, The Sleeping Beauty and Swan Lake
■ G Live, Guildford ■ Thu 26 – Sat 28 Dec

Saint Petersburg Classic Ballet returns to G Live with a spectacular Tchaikovsky Trilogy – The NutcrackerThe Sleeping Beauty and Swan Lake – under the direction of Marina Medvetskaya. A full orchestra complements the classical purity of the dancing and traditional staging, to bring a taste of imperial Russia to the UK this festive season.

FAMILY EVENT: Boxing Day history walk
■ Runnymede ■ Thu 26 Dec

Walk off all that turkey and head to Runnymede to discover how people have celebrated Christmas throughout history. Warm up afterwards with a cup of tea and a mince pie.

SPORT: Guildford Flames vs Cardiff Devils Ice Hockey
■ Spectrum Leisure Complex, Guildford ■ Thu 26 Dec

Dodge the Christmas cabin fever, wrap up warm and try something different with this Boxing Day hockey match. Did you know Guildford has its own (very successful!) ice hockey team?

OUTDOORS: Winter Woollies Trail
■ Claremont Landscape Gardens ■ Thu 26 Dec

Mince pie for the road? Wrap up warm and put those new gloves from grandma to good use and get to know the beautiful grounds of Claremont.

WORKSHOP: New Year’s Countdown Clock Making
■ The Lightbox, Woking ■ Fri 27 Dec

Got the nibbles and tipples ready for the New Year’s Eve party but missing one crucial thing? Of course, you need a handmade countdown clock! Take your little ones along to this workshop and get crafting using recycled Christmas cards and other bits and bobs.

SPORT: Big Game 12
■ Twickenham Stadium ■ Sat 28 Dec

Rally up your rowdy pals for a post-Christmas rugby party with this hot contest between Harlequins and Leicester Tigers!

ART: De Morgan Collection Talks
■ Watts Gallery ■ Mon 30 Dec

Join De Morgan Foundation curator Sarah Hardy and explore the what, where and why of the motifs and symbols in the work of William and Evelyn De Morgan as part of the redisplay Decoration or Devotion?

SPORT EVENT: New Year’s Eve All-Weather Racing
■ Lingfield Park ■ Tue 31 Dec

Get yourself in the celebratory mood with some racing action ahead of the midnight celebrations! The dress code is smart casual, but why not dress up and upgrade for a panoramic trackside restaurant meal?

EXHIBITION: In Print – Capturing Light
■ Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village, Compton ■ now until 5 January 2020

Tim Southall, Coming Home, etching

This exhibition series brings together over 50 original prints by 10 leading contemporary artists to explore how light and shadow are captured through diverse printmaking techniques.

EXHIBITION: Burning Bright: The Scottish Colourists
■ The Lightbox, Woking ■ ends 12 Jan 2020

This exhibition brings together the significant works of Scottish Colourists S.J. Peploe, J.D. Fergusson, G.L. Hunter and F.C.B. Cadell. The works include paintings and drawings which represent all of the favoured subjects of the artists such as still-life, interior scenes, landscapes and portraiture.

EXHIBITION: William Orpen: Mathod and Mastery
■ Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village, Compton ■ ends 23 Feb 2020

William Orpen RA (1878-1931), Le Chef de l’Hotel

Celebrated for his career as an official war artist, the Irish-born painter Sir William Orpen KBE RA (1878 – 1931) is best known for his rapid and expressive painting style. Featuring a selection of striking portraits alongside closely observed pencil studies and anatomical drawings, this exhibition provides new insights into Orpen’s evolving and innovative artistic process.

EXHIBITION: William Blake
■ Tate Britain, London ■ ends 2 Feb 2020 

Poet, painter and printmaker William Blake has created some of the most iconic images in British art. This new exhibition, the largest of Blake’s work for almost 20 years, will feature over 300 original works, as well as an immersive recreation of the small domestic room in which Blake showed his art in 1809. Other pieces will be digitally recreated on an enormous scale.

EXHIBITION: Tim Walker: Wonderful Things
■ V&A Museum, London ■ ends 8 March 2020 

Curated in collaboration with the lauded avant garde Vogue portrait and fashion photographer, this will feature some of Walker’s seminal, fantastical images from his 25-year career, featuring major celebs including Kate Moss, Sir David Attenborough, Tilda Swinton, Cate Blanchett, Björk and many more. You can also see 10 new photographic series created for the show, by Walker, influenced by the museum’s exhibits.



Find more ideas here

Things to doThis month

Tell us what you think

Your email address will not be published.

* Required
* Required

Little Black Book

The Little Black Book

Our A-Z of the grooviest local businesses to help make your life easier

View the businesses
Back Home

The Urban Guide to the Countryside - Surrey

Reader Treats Just For You!