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Your guide to what’s on in Surrey this December

December has arrived and the jingle bells are ringing. There's plenty to keep us entertained this month, including festive fun, classic comedy, exhibitions and more.

Fashion historian Amber Butchart will be talking at Watts Gallery. Image credit: Noel Gay

TALK: Medieval Revivalism in Pre-Raphaelite Fashion
■ Watts Gallery, near Guildford ■ Wed 1 Dec
Join fashion historian, writer and broadcaster Amber Butchart as she explores the fashion of the Pre-Raphaelite era and reflects on its sartorial influence today.

VISIT: Christmas at the Tower of London
■ Tower of London, London ■ Wed 1 Dec – Mon 3 Jan
Enjoy the thrill of displays of festive decorations and illuminated animal-themed areas across the fortress, one of London’s most famous landmarks. Don’t forget to check out the crown jewels while you’re there!

WORKSHOP: A Watts Winter Wreath
■ Watts Gallery, near Guildford ■ Fri 3 – Sat 4 Dec
Rolls up your sleeves and get festive! Create a stunning winter wreath for your home using natural materials from across the Watts Gallery estate.

COMEDY: Jason Manford: Like Me
■ Dorking Halls, Dorking ■ Fri 3 Dec

Jason is back from a few years away from the live comedy circuit with his new show packed with observational humour we can all relate to and a hefty dose of that northern charm.

PANTO: Dick Whittington
■ Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, Guildford ■ Fri 3 Dec – Sun 9 Jan

A purrfect Christmas treat! Peter Gordon will take on the role of Dame Sally the Cook in what will be his 15th Yvonne Arnaud panto appearance! Join the cast as Dick goes off to London seeking fame and fortune. Oh yes he will!

CINEMA: Love Actually
■ Everyman, Reigate ■ Fri 3 Dec

What’s Christmas without watching all of the classic festive films? Tick Love Actually off the list with this special showing at Everyman, a cinema that has sofas and food to order to your seat!

ART: Ingram Contemporary Talent: Adrift by Kristina Chan
■ The Lightbox, Woking ■ Sat 4 Dec – Sun 2 Jan
The exhibition is part of a series of solo shows by recipients of The Ingram Prize. Chan’s collection of work began in the Blue Mountains, documenting the approach of the 2019 bushfires that ravaged Australia.

The Palace of Stardust at Hampton Court Palace. Photo courtesy Historic Royal Palaces

EVENT: Palace of Stardust
■ Hampton Court Palace ■ Wed 8 Dec – Mon 3 Jan
A light trail like no other! Explore the historic cobbled courtyards and gardens filled with magical illuminations, glowing lanterns and mesmerising projections. Fill your boots with seasonal food and drink to polish off the perfect Christmas evening out.

WORKSHOP: Winter Wreath Painting Workshop
■ Painshill, Cobham ■ Wed 8 Dec
Got your festive wreath sorted but still fancy channeling your arty side? Explore calming watercolour technique at this seasonal, beginner-friendly workshop and paint your perfect wreath.

SHOW: A Festive Evening of Burlesque & Vaudeville
■ Electric Theatre, Guildford ■ Fri 10 Dec

Gather your gal pals and head to the Electric Theatre for a night packed full of festive burlesque, vaudeville, circus and drag acts!

PANTO: Aladdin
■ Harlequin Theatre, Redhill ■ Fri 10 Dec – Sun 2 Dec

It’s everyone’s favourite magic carpet owner! This year’s Redhill panto of Aladdin features Britain’s Got Talent finalist Daliso Chaponda starring as Wishee Washee and CBBC presenter Naomi Wilkinson as the Spirit of the Ring.

KIDS THEATRE: Baby Broadway Christmas
■ Camberley Theatre ■ Sat 11 Dec

An interactive Christmas performance suitable for all ages, enjoy famous songs from Christmas films such as Elf, The Snowman and Frozen with bubbles and puppets galore.

TALK: Tim Peake – My Journey to Space and Back
■ G Live, Guildford ■ Sat 11 Dec

Got a budding astronaut in the family? Introduce them to a real life one when Tim Peake comes to Guildford to share his incredible photographs, footage and stories form his time in space.

Kit Hesketh Harvey as King Rat in Dick Whittington at Yvonne Arnaud Theatre.

KIDS WORKSHOP: Christmas Flower Pot Decorations
■ Cranleigh Arts Centre ■ Sat 11 Dec

Suitable for ages 3-6, roll up your little one’s sleeves and add to that Christmas decorations haul with a fun and creative workshop led by local artist Miriana D’ambrosio.

SHOW: Here Comes Santa Claus!
■ New Wimbledon Theatre ■ Wed 15 – Fri 24 Dec
Is that an Elf the children can see? Are those reindeer bells they can hear? It’s all happening at Santa rolls around for his annual visit! This production is for 3-8 year olds, with plenty of audience interaction and Christmas songs.

OUTDOOR CINEMA: Festive Drive-in Cinema
■ The Duke of Cambridge pub, Tilford ■ Sat 18 – Mon 20 Dec
Pack your fleecy blankets, pillows and popcorn in the car to enjoy the very best in classic Christmas movies at The Duke of Cambridge’s festive drive-in cinema. Movies on the billing include It’s a Wonderful Life, Elf, Home Alone and Rise of the

ART: Bridget Riley: Pleasures of Sight
■ The Lightbox, Woking ■ Sat 18 Dec – Sun 10 April
In celebration of Bridget Riley’s 90th birthday this year, this exhibition will explore the artist’s love of sight and features her art and working methods through a selection of exemplary striped, curved, colour and black-and-white works.

PANTO: Cinderella
■ The Leatherhead Theatre, Leatherhead ■ Sat 18 – Fri 31 Dec

What better way to see if you’re destined to be with your prince charming than to leave your shoe behind at a party? Cinderella has the right idea in this year’s Leatherhead panto that is guaranteed to be a real treat for the whole family.

RELAXED PANTO: Jack & The Beanstalk
■ Dorking Halls, Dorking ■ Sat 18 – Tue 28 Dec

Fee fi fo fum… We sense a panto that will be a lot of fun! This relaxed performance of an age-old classic is designed to be perfect for everyone.

CRAFTS: ‘Do You Want To Build A Snowman?’
■ Chiswick House & Gardens ■ Sat 18 Dec

Keen kiddie crafters, unite! Elaine Gordon will show you how to use simple techniques (no sewing required) to make your own unique snow person!

FOODIES: A Taste of Christmas at Denbies
■ Denbies Wine Estate, Dorking ■ Sat 18 Dec

A luxury pre-Christmas feast perfect for a date night, enjoy a sparkling festive evening starting with sparkling wine tasting followed by a three course dinner, coffee and festive bites.

Book in for a wreath making workshop at Watts Gallery. Image credit: Watts Gallery

SHOW: Morgan and West’s Great Big Christmas Magic Show
■ Farnham Maltings ■ Sun 19 – Fri 24 Dec

Time-travelling magicians Morgan and West are rolling into Christmas with their show full of family fun and festive frolics. A real magical treat!

RACES: Christmas Jumper Raceday
■ Lingfield Park ■ Mon 20 Dec

Head to Lingfield for a day of seven races, with fundraising in aid of the wonderful charity Save the Children.

EXHIBITION: First for Art Exhibition
■ Denbies Wine Estate, Dorking ■ Mon 20 Dec – Sun 2 Jan

First for Art exhibits commission-free artwork and photography in stunning Surrey locations. Head to Denbies’ permanent in-house art gallery situated on the first floor for a plethora of art and photography.

KIDS SHOW: Santa’s Merrily Muddled Christmas
■ The Arts Hub, Bletchingley ■ Mon 20 – Thu 23 Dec

This year, Santa Claus will be able to deliver presents in record time thanks to his new gadget – the Flux Ca-PARCEL-ator built by Chief Technical Elf, Elvis Pickle-Pants! ENjoy the show followed by festive arts and crafts, meet and greet Santa and have a photo with the big guy!

SHOW: Rose Christmas Snowball
■ Rose Theatre, Kingston ■ Mon 20 Dec

Prepare for festive goosebumps with this beautiful Christmas carol concert featuring local choirs. Proceeds from this fundraising evening will support the Rose Theatre’s diverse programme of drama, cultural and learning opportunities.

FESTIVE FUN: Festive Twilight Train Ride and Gallery Restaurant dinner
■ Denbies Wine Estate, Dorking ■ Tue 21 – Wed 22 Dec

For £59 per person, your evening will consist of an atmospheric train ride through the estate with a glass of sparkling wine, followed with a three course meal in The Gallery Restaurant. Feeling festive yet?

SHOW: Rocky Horror Show
■ G Live, Guildford ■ Tue 21 Dec – Sat 1 Jan
Starring Strictly Come Dancing winner Ore Oduba as Brad, one of the stage’s most famous shows is arriving in Guildford! Let’s do the time warp!

KIDS CRAFTS: Christmas Crafts
■ Gatton Park, Redhill ■ Wed 22 Dec

Gather the 3-7 year olds in your life for a morning of festive crafts in the beautiful setting of Gatton Park. Polish off the morning with a visit to the teahouse for lunch – it is Christmas after all!

There are celebrations aplenty for New Year’s Eve across Surrey.

SPORT: Phoenix Year End Marathon & Half Marathon
■ Elmbridge Xcel Sports Hub, Walton-on-Thames ■ Tue 28 Dec
Like yourself a post-Christmas blow out challenge? This is a scenic jaunt along the River Thames from Walton-on-Thames towards Hampton Court and back. Runners complete either four or eight laps for the half marathon or marathon distance, with a medal for every runner.

CONCERT: Scoot’s Christmas Crackers Concert
■ St Mary’s Church, Pixham ■ Wed 29 Dec
Join West End performers Aaron Sidwell and Nikki Bentley as they share their favourite songs from the world of musical theatre and Christmas classics!

NIGHT OUT: New Year Celebrations
■ Pine Ridge Golf Club, Frimley ■ Fri 31 Dec
It’s time to celebrate 2021! For £55 per person, the evening will start with an arrival cocktail followed by a three course dinner and party with the resident DJ.

RACES: New Year’s Eve Racing
■ Lingfield Park ■ Fri 31 Dec

Warm up for your evening of New Year’s celebrations with a day of racing at Lingfield. Things wrap up around 3.30pm, so plenty of time to head home to get your gladrags on!

PARTY: New Year’s Eve celebrations
■ Foxhills Country Club, Ottershaw ■ Fri 31 Dec

Don your finest for this black tie event as we say adios to 2021 and welcome in 2022. There are four evening packages on offer, with the most luxurious including an overnight stay and a five-course dining experience.

CELEBRATE: Family-friendly New Year’s Eve
■ Esher Rugby Club ■ Fri 31 Dec

With food galore and entertainment guaranteed, head to Esher for a New Year’s Eve for the whole family. Adult entry is £10, under 18s are £5 and under 5s go free. Don’t forget to book ahead.

THEMED NYE: New Year’s Eve 007 Party
■ Hampton Court Palace Golf Club ■ Fri 31 Dec

For £95 per person, expect shaken or stirred drinks on arrival followed by a lip-smacking three-course meal. For afters, dance the evening away to the music from The Ultimate Michael Bublé Tribute ’til the clock strikes 12.


MUSIC: The Jockey Club Live, Sandown Park Racecourse, various dates

Already dreaming of summer? We hear ya! There’s a jam-packed schedule of concerts at Sandown Park Racecourse this year, so saddle up and book ‘em now. You can catch music legends Nile Rodgers & CHIC on 27 July, the fabulous Paloma Faith on 20 July, and Simply Red on 4 Aug. Giddy on, hot weather.

1 comment on “Your guide to what’s on in Surrey this December”

  • Siân McCoy November 30, 2021

    Another concert for you to advertise, if you wouldn’t mind, is the Motivation By Music Comeback Concert being held at the United Reform Church in Guildford on Saturday 11th December at 7.30. Favourite Christmas Carols and original songs by our very own Emily Bollon, musical director. Tickets available from Eventbrite. Can be watched remotely too by ticket!


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