5 of the best
What’s on in your area this week
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
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)
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
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:
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