13 fantastic festive things to do in Tewkesbury this Christmas

Tewkesbury is getting well and truly into the festive spirit, with so much going on this Christmas 2022 - from its popular family pantomime, Christmas market and lights switch on, to festive afternoon tea and the chance to meet Santa.

By Chloe Gorman  |  Published
Tewkesbury is gearing up for Christmas 2022, with so many ways to celebrate the season in the medieval town.
In partnership with Tewkesbury Borough Council  |  visittewkesbury.info
Tewkesbury Borough Council

Providing essential services to residents, businesses and tourists, Tewkesbury Borough Council aims to make the medieval town a wonderful place to live, work and visit. Encouraging residents and visitors to support local businesses, it is also offering free parking in its car parks on Sunday 20 November, Saturday 3 and Saturday 24 December 2022, perfect for Christmas shoppers.

From Christmas markets to carol concerts in spectacular settings, there's so much to do in Tewkesbury this festive season.

SoGlos rounds up 13 things to do in the medieval town this Christmas 2022, including where you can meet Santa Claus himself! 

See the Christmas lights come on in Tewkesbury town centre

Tewkesbury town centre is set to sparkle when the Christmas lights are switched on this Sunday 20 November 2022. There's a Christmas market with 100 stalls taking over parts of the High Street, Church Street and Barton Street selling everything from fresh farm produce to festive gifts; fairground rides; free entertainment, including a chance to meet the cast of The Roses Theatre's pantomime; and Father Christmas will be making an appearance, too.

Parking is free at all Tewkesbury Borough Council car parks on the day, entertainment kicks off at 12pm and the Christmas lights are set to come on at 5pm. 

Watch The Roses Theatre's popular pantomime

The panto is back at The Roses Theatre - oh yes it is - as Snow White takes to the stage this Christmas. Starting on Saturday 26 November 2022, the popular panto is on right through the festive season until Saturday 31 December 2022, with a variety of performance times each day. 

Penned by BAFTA-winning writer, Maurice Gran, this year's show sees the evil Queen Malvinha try to strip Tewkesbury of its natural resources to make herself the fairest in the land - and only Snow White, her buxom Nanny and the palace's IT guy can save the town! For more information, see Snow White at The Roses Theatre

Meet Santa at Dobbies

There's a whole host of festive events taking place at the newly opened Dobbies Garden Centre, including the chance to meet Santa himself! Santa's Grotto is open on selected dates from Thursday 24 November to Saturday 24 December 2022, where little ones can follow the elf through the snowy forest to meet Santa in his toy shop and receive a gift, with tickets costing £11.99 each.

Families can also enjoy breakfast with Santa; and you can even take your four-legged friend to see Father Christmas with a Santa Paws experience - with both taking place on selected dates from Saturday 3 to Saturday 24 December 2022. 

Browse for unique gifts at Tewkesbury's Christmas fairs

Offering a selection of arts, crafts and Christmas gifts from local makers, Tewkesbury Town Hall plays host to a number of craft fairs in the run-up to Christmas on Saturday 26 November; Wednesday 7, Friday 9, Saturday 10 and Saturday 17 December 2022. 

Tewkesbury Abbey is also hosting a Christmas Fair on Saturday 26 November 2022, providing a beautiful backdrop for a spot of Christmas shopping with free entry. 

Enjoy an indulgent festive afternoon tea at Tewkesbury Park

Promising delectable dishes like Severn & Wye smoked salmon, avocado and pickled cucumber sourdough sandwiches; freshly baked scones slathered with jam and Cotswold cream; blood orange macarons; blackberry and apple frangipane tarts; and a chocolate parfait dome with cinnamon crème fraiche, satisfy your sweet tooth with a festive afternoon tea at Tewkesbury Park.

Enjoy unlimited loose leaf tea or coffee; or for an extra special experience, opt for a glass of English sparkling wine to accompany your treats.

Sing Christmas carols at Tewkesbury Abbey

Tewkesbury Abbey is hosting a variety of special services in the run up to Christmas, welcoming everyone to celebrate the season together in a spectacular setting. 

Marking the start of the Christmas build up, its Advent Carols Service takes place on Sunday 27 November 2022 with beautiful music provided by the Tewkesbury Abbey choir and Schola Cantorum - while its traditional Christmas Carol Service is taking place on Sunday 18 December 2022. 

Marvel at The Royal Ballet's performance of The Nutcracker

The Nutcracker is one of the most magical Christmas stories - and audiences in Tewkesbury can watch a special screening of The Royal Ballet's version on Thursday 8 December 2022 at The Roses Theatre

See how Clara's Christmas Eve party transforms into an adventure through an imaginary land where the Mouse King and the Sugar Plum Fairy reside, told through the magical medium of dance. 

Go to a Christmas concert

With music from Bach, Vivaldi and Vaughan Williams, The Tewkesbury Choral Society is performing a classical Christmas concert on Saturday 3 December 2022 at the beautiful Tewkesbury Abbey, with tickets costing £18 each.

Tewkesbury Town Band's Christmas concert takes place at The Roses Theatre also on Saturday 3 December 2022; while the Serenity Christmas Concert takes place at St Nicholas Church in Aschurch and the Scola Cantorum perform Handel's Messiah at Tewkesbury Abbey on Saturday 17 December 2022. For a more relaxed way to get into the Christmas spirit, there are live music events, including singalong Christmas carols, taking place at Tewkesbury's pubs throughout December, too.

Put together a Christmas hamper at Miss Muffet's

Championing delicious local produce, Miss Muffet's Deli on Church Street puts together a selection of incredible Christmas hampers.

From the Holly Choccy Christmas full of truffles, cakes, hot chocolate spoons and biscuits packed into a jolly red hamper, to Cotswolds Distillery cream liqueur, Tewkesbury mustard, Cotswold Gold roasting oils and Cotswold blossom honey in the Cotswold Classic Christmas hamper, there's something for every taste. 

Say cheers to festive bottomless brunch at Tewkesbury Garden Centre

Browns Garden Restaurant at Tewkesbury Garden Centre is hosting a special festive evening bottomless brunch on Thursday 24 November 2022, where the mulled wine, mulled cider, fruit mimosas and prosecco will be flowing to get visitors into the Christmas spirit.

Dig into Christmas butter boards, mince pie ice cream pancakes and plenty more; enjoy a live singer belting out Christmas classics; and take advantage of late night shopping at the garden centre too - with exclusive savings on a whole range of products. 

Get creative at a Christmas craft workshop

Try your hand at crafting your own Christmas wreath to hang on your front door at the Watson Hall on Friday 9 and Sunday 11 December 2022, with a workshop to make your own unique blue spruce and moss wreath with the help of Bluebell Wood Florist. 

Willow expert, Susie Early from the Gloucestershire Guilds of Craftsmen, is also hosting a Christmas willow workshop on Saturday 10 December 2022, giving keen crafters a chance to make their own Christmas trees, stars and angels out of beautiful natural materials. 

Let the chefs at Tudor House Hotel cook lunch on Christmas Day

Tewkesbury's historic Tudor House Hotel is inviting guests to enjoy a lavish three-course Christmas lunch on the big day, with dishes including treacle cured salmon; leek and potato hash; cod loin wrapped in pancetta; sweet potato and mushroom Wellington; roast turkey with all the trimmings; espresso parfait; blood orange panna cotta; and of course, Christmas pudding with brandy sauce. 

There are two sittings, at 12pm and 2pm, costing ¬£85 per adult and ¬£42.50 per child, with drinks packages available, too - and no washing up to worry about! 

Go all out with a three-night Christmas retreat at Tewkesbury Park

Promising the ultimate festive experience, spend three nights at the luxurious Tewkesbury Park and let its incredible team treat you like royalty this Christmas. Check in on Christmas Eve, where a festive afternoon tea will be waiting to welcome you, followed by a Christmas movie, popcorn and hot chocolate with marshmallows, then a decadent three-course dinner, before snuggling up in bed with a hot water bottle.

Wake up on the big day to Buck's Fizz, get glammed up ready for a four-course festive feast, then enjoy a relaxed evening with local produce and home-made Christmas cake to pick at. On Boxing Day, tuck into a leisurely breakfast, head out for a walk in the gorgeous grounds, relax in the hot tub and indulge in a six-course tasting menu with cocktails that evening; then finish off your stay with a hearty breakfast on Tuesday 27 December 2022 before heading home. 

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