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Norwich is a hive of wonderful festive events during November and December with Norwich Theatre Royal’s panto running until 7 January, and The Assembly House serving their last Nutcracker Afternoon Tea on 8 January. So even between Christmas and New Year there is plenty to do!
The season starts with The Festive Fair at the Forum (23 – 26 November, free entry) which is the largest and most popular Christmas market selling East Anglian made products with lots of live seasonal music, food and drink thrown in for good measure!
Look out for details on The Forum website for more markets as usually there is something every weekend. From local crafters and artists to makers from around the world, there’s a lot of choice.
Another exciting market is the annual Clutter City Christmas Market at Norwich Arts Centre in the Norwich Lanes. Free to enter, you’ll find a great selection of local artisans from printers and artists to jewellers, and everything in between. Plus, great food and drink. Clutter City takes place 9 December (11am-4pm).
Christmas is not Christmas without a visit to the panto. And Norwich Theatre Royal always puts on an incredible and hilarious show. This year see Beverly Callard (Coronation Street) as the Evil Fairy in Sleeping Beauty alongside panto stalwart (and writer) Richard Gauntlett as The Queen in his 23rd year. As well as the return of YouTube star and The Times best-selling author Joe Tracini.
And who can forget the incredible festive experiences on at Thursford? Every Christmas, the Christmas Spectacular (Wednesday, November 8 – Saturday, December 23)and the Enchanted Journey of Light (Sunday, November 19 – Sunday, December 24) are absolute must-sees. The Christmas Spectacular is the largest festive show in the country, set in the magical surroundings of mechanical organs and fairground carousels from Thursford’s stunning collection.
The show has a cast of 120 professional singers, dancers, musicians, and more – most of whom are straight out of the West End! The three-hour performance is full of non-stop singing, dancing, humour, and variety.
Meanwhile, the Enchanted Journey of Light is a simply brilliant adventure for the whole family. Start your journey in the Fantasyland building, travelling past penguins, polar bears, and giant-sized teddy bears! Then, continue on past Santa’s elves as they work hard in the toy factory. See the Lantern Light Extravaganza, and vintage funfair rides too!
Norwich Cathedral annually offers a host of wonderful musical events to celebrate Christmas, watch their website for full details. Also keep an eye on The Cathedral of St John the Baptist and St Peter Mancroft (Norwich’s largest medieval church situated in the city centre opposite The Forum).
Strangers’ Hall museum celebrates its centenary this year and always has a festive feel at Christmas. With every room decorated in a different era its an exciting building with something unusual around every corner.