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Surrey Herald/News - - LEISURE -

1 Horses ready for win­ter out­ing

BOX­ING Day is a chance to re­deem your­self after the Christ­mas fes­tiv­i­ties and may­hem of the Jan­uary sales, so why not at­tend a day of fam­ily fun and rac­ing. A trip to the races will not sim­ply give you a chance to di­gest your Christ­mas feast but also en­com­pass a rich tra­di­tion sur­round­ing Box­ing Day’s his­tor­i­cal sport­ing ties. This year on Box­ing Day, not only can you wit­ness the fa­mous King George VI Chase – you can also en­joy live mu­sic from London’s lead­ing Ir­ish band, Back O’Beyond and free chil­dren’s en­ter­tain­ment with a fal­conry dis­play, mini pet­ting farm and pony rides. For race­go­ers want­ing an ex­tra spe­cial day out to cel­e­brate the fes­tive sea­son, there is a va­ri­ety of su­perb hos­pi­tal­ity op­tions avail­able to en­joy dur­ing the two-day Christ­mas fes­ti­val, from din­ing in Kemp­ton Park’s panoramic restau­rant, to hav­ing your very own pri­vate box, all with fan­tas­tic views of the race­track.

What: Wil­liam Hill Win­ter Fes­ti­val

When: De­cem­ber 26-27

Where: Kemp­ton Park Race­course

See: www.kemp­ton.co.uk

2 Fes­tive Head­line fe­line in here fun

DO you love cats? Well this is the pan­tomime for you. What will hap­pen when our favourite fe­line en­coun­ters aliens from another planet and of course the evil Moon­pig? Will River­house’s favourite po­lice­men, Reg and Stan, help in any way? Or will they, as usual, make a com­plete hash of ev­ery­thing (in­clud­ing their lines!). With live mu­sic and real stars (painted on the set).

What: Puss in Space

When: Un­til De­cem­ber 20

Where: River­house Arts Cen­tre, Walton

Cost: £8 (£6 car­pet)

See: www.river­house­barn.com

3 Con­duc­tor bows out at con­cert

CHRIST­MAS doesn’t start with the ap­pear­ance of the first mince pie in the su­per­mar­ket – it starts with Spelthorne Choral So­ci­ety’s Christ­mas con­cert. It will be con­duc­tor David Mea­cock’s last con­cert with the so­ci­ety and on the pro­gramme will be Vi­valdi’s Glo­ria. This is fol­lowed by Vaughan-Wil­liams’ Fan­ta­sia on Christ­mas Car­ols, which cap­tures and cel­e­brates warm-heart­ed­ness and char­ity. Pro­fes­sion­als Lind­say Bridg­wa­ter, the so­ci­ety’s reg­u­lar ac­com­pa­nist, and four soloists, in­clud­ing lo­cal mezzo so­prano and Spelthorne Young Voices con­duc­tor Jo Gar­dener, will com­plete the line- up to give a splen­did start to Christ­mas.

What: Spelthorne Choral So­ci­ety Christ­mas con­cert

When: De­cem­ber 20, 7.30pm

Where: St Peter’s Church, Staines

Cost: £10.50 on­line, £13 on the door

See: www.spelthorne­choral­so­ci­ety.com

4 A very Christ­massy Christ­mas

THE Squash­box The­atre brings a fan­tas­tic new fam­ily show that cel­e­brates ev­ery­thing Christ­massy, from fir trees, fairy lights, stock­ings and sleigh bells to cook­ies, crack­ers, presents and pud­ding. Meet a snow­man who lives in the fridge, try to spot some naughty elves, hear the tale of the first Christ­mas tree, play hunt the Brussels sprout and en­dure the world’s worst Christ­mas jumper.

What: The Christ­massy Christ­mas Show of Christ­massy Christ­mas

When: De­cem­ber 20

Where: The Firesta­tion, Wind­sor Cost:

See: www.firesta­tion­arts­cen­tre.com

5 Mag­i­cal win­ter walk at gar­dens

LEAP into the world of Nar­nia this Christ­mas with RHS Gar­den Wis­ley’s mag­i­cal story trail in­spired by C S Lewis’s The

Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, adapted and pre­sented by Kingston’s Rose The­atre. Be­gin your jour­ney by seek­ing out the glow of the lamp post. Follow the mag­i­cal trail through the strik­ing colours of win­ter, seek­ing out the lov­able Mr Tum­nus and a very busy beaver. The walk con­jures up the spirit of Nar­nia with win­ter berries, var­ie­gated leaves and strik­ing red cor­nus and burnt orange salix stems. Mel­low au­tumn mists or fine sub­dued sun give the gar­den an at­mo­spheric set­ting. In the Wild Gar­den the colour and camel­lias ac­com­pany the bam­boos.

What: Win­ter Walk

When: De­cem­ber 20-Jan­uary 4

Where: RHS Wis­ley Call: 0845 260 9000

See: www.rhs.org.uk/Wis­ley-Gar­den

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