Head to a fab festive fair to fill loved ones’ stockings and foodie goodies for you too!
Open Now Christmas at Blackthorpe Barn
The magic of Blackthorpe’s festive wonderland begins as you make your way up the tree-lined approach to the rustic medieval barn, which sits nestled in atmospheric woodland just outside Bury St Edmunds. The Country Christmas Shop brims over with beautiful festive decorations and handmade gifts, showcasing the work of the country’s finest craft makers, whilst outside you can buy Christmas trees grown on the estate.
The shop is open now, right up until 22 December, and is offering more gifts than ever before, from gorgeous scented candles to decorative lights. There’s also a section dedicated to Make and Bake, which provides everything you need to create your own beautifully unique gifts, decorations and treats. Each weekend from 12 November to 11 December, half of the barn is given over to craft-makers, showcasing an ever changing array of jewellery, textiles, knitwear, ceramics and artworks to peruse and purchase.
When you need to refuel, pop along to the barn’s café, which serves up freshly made cakes and snacks, hot chocolate and mulled wine. Kids, meanwhile, will adore Santa’s grotto, with its twinkling lights, elves, deer and plenty more surprises.
“We love Christmas at Blackthorpe Barn, it is a lot of hard work but just seeing the look on visitors’ faces and particularly the children’s faces, makes it all worthwhile,” says George Agnew, owner of Blackthorpe Barn and Rougham Estate. “This year we have searched the country to find some new amazing gift makers and we found some totally inspiring people.
“So we have enhanced our gift ranges to include delightfully packaged personal grooming and pamper kits, and wintry themed gifts such as wonderfully soft lambs wool blankets and genuinely tried-and-tested Arctic survival kits consisting of some fabulous ointments that really do work. We are looking forward to welcoming returning and new visitors to Christmas at Blackthorpe Barn this year.”
30 November, 7, 14, 21 December Burwash Manor: Welcome to Winter
There’s a wide range of special offers and discounts to open the late-night shopping season at Burwash Manor, with a special Welcome to Winter evening.
On 30 November shops will stay open until 8pm, and continue to do so every Wednesday in the run-up to Christmas. Festive live music, culinary delights from some of your favourite street food vans, samplings and tasters galore will be available from 5 to 8pm.
The shops at Burwash Manor are all small, independently owned businesses that offer a range of goods and produce, many exclusive to the site. You’ll find clothes for adults and children, vintage and modern furniture, children’s toys, paints and home decor, fine wines, a butchers and deli, gifts and jewellery, fresh flowers, Persian carpets, garden furniture and much more.
There’s free parking provided and free entry to the event.
1-3 December Etsy Made Local Christmas Fair
There’s also the opportunity to blitz your Christmas shopping list with a trip to the Etsy Made Local Christmas Fair, running from 1-3 December.
Taking place at the St Andrew’s Street Baptist Church, the event will feature more than thirty designer-makers from the area showcasing wares including jewellery, edible treats, beautiful pieces for the home, crafts and plenty more.
The fair is open from 12pm to 8pm on the 1st, 10am to 6.30pm on the 2nd and 10am to 6.30pm on the 3rd.
3 December Mill Road Winter Fair
One of the most anticipated events of the local calendar, the Mill Road Winter Fair returns on 3 December. As ever, there will be a huge range of stalls to browse from local independent retailers, as well a food market offering all sorts of delicious treats to try and buy as gifts. Entertainment includes gospel choirs, a reggae stage, circus acts, Morris dancers and a colourful parade from local schools and community groups. We’ll have plenty more info on the event in the next issue, and if you want to get involved, they’re always on the lookout for volunteers to help the day run smoothly – visit the website for more details.
10, 11 December Wood Green Festive Fair
Wood Green, The Animals Charity, will host a festive fair at their Godmanchester centre on 10 and 11 December, 10am to 4pm. Organised by Oakleigh Fairs, the event will take place in a huge indoor arena, offering traders selling everything from arts, crafts and gifts to food and drink. Admission is £2.50 on the gate, or free for children under 16 years.