The festive season kicked off at the Christmas Cracker in November, a magical street festival in St Albans that featured family entertainment, delicious street food and a great place to shop with festive market stalls. Now, head to the city centre for the Gingerbread Trail which is new for 2023 and brought to you by St Albans BID. This fun, free, family-friendly activity leads you through the festive streets in search of ten Gingerbread sculptures housed in shop windows. You can pick up a trail map from St Albans Museum + Gallery.
Stotfold Creative Fair
Fairfield Community Hall
This popular event is back for their third year, this time at a much bigger venue – meaning more local creatives for you to enjoy. Bringing over 40 small businesses to Stotfold including food, drink, crafts, face painting and a meet and greet with Santa himself and Mrs Claus. Entry is free, meaning this is the perfect Christmas warm up for all the family.
Until 4 February
St Albans Museum + Gallery
A fascinating tale of silk and steel, the Ballito Bombshells exhibition tells the story of Fleetville’s Ballington Hosiery Mill that manufactured everything from delicate stockings to robust artillery shells between the 1920s and the 1960s. Inspiring and remarkable, Ballito Bombshells recounts the stories of its employees – from their rigorous work to popular social events at the mill – and charts the history of the factory itself. Visitors will be able to enjoy a selection of the striking designs that made Ballito so memorable, a rundown of the machinery used in production, and an insight into the company’s role in the Second World War.
One of the UK’s favourite TV household names returns to the stage with a brand-new show. From the quote attributed to Mark Twain, humour is defined as Tragedy Plus Time. Go and join one of our leading laugh specialists as he tests that formula by mining the most tragic event in his life for laughs. With legions of fans both in the UK and abroad, Ed Byrne remains the observational stand-up to see.
Movie Double Bill
St Albans Cathedral
Make it a Christmas to remember with a very special performance featuring two of the UK’s best-loved and iconic animated films, The Snowman and Wallace & Gromit: The Wrong Trousers, with live accompaniment from an outstanding professional orchestra.
Presented by Carrot Productions – the world’s leading performers of The Snowman film with orchestra, currently celebrating their 10th anniversary – their award-winning show is brought to life in spectacular fashion by the UK’s finest musicians. Alongside The Snowman film, join everyone’s favourite cheese-loving inventor, Wallace and his trusty companion, Gromit in Aardman’s multi award-winning film, The Wrong Trousers.
Christmas Past & Present
Hitchin Town Hall & Museum
Throw the turkey out the window and step back in time to discover Christmas dinner traditions from the past, and not just the British ones, on 5 and 20 December. Secrets of the Stores on 9 December will showcase toys gifted to children over 100 years ago, handle some classic toys and flick through some items from the museum’s archive. No need to book, it’s free, just drop in and find us in the galleries. And bring your little elves (under 12s) along to the snow-tastic Christmas disco at Hitchin Town Hall on 16 December – get your costumes at the ready for an afternoon filled with fun and games.
Find something a little different at one of Hertfordshire’s markets this festive season
ST ALBANS MARKET
Shop for everything you could possibly want and enjoy the buzz and energy of the historic twice-weekly St Albans Market, which is at the heart of the city’s story. You’d be hard pushed not to leave without something a little different to take home with you.
Market Place, every Wednesday and Saturday
Stock up on local specialities at St Albans and Harpenden Farmers’ Markets including mouth-watering cheeses, seasonal fruit and vegetables, fresh herbs, top quality meat and game, dairy produce, freshly baked cakes and bread, and locally hand-crafted goods.
Opposite St Albans Museum + Gallery on the second Sunday of every month and Harpenden Lower High Street on the fourth Sunday of every month (except December, which is the third Sunday)
ST ALBANS VINTAGE MARKET
Inspirational deals and fascinating finds are a plenty at the St Albans Vintage Market with all
manner of antiques, vintage, brocante and architectural salvage.
City Centre, St Albans, Sunday once a month 9am-3pm
ST ALBANS VEGAN MARKET
Find up to 60 stalls at the St Albans Vegan Market including a huge variety of vegan fast food, healthy eats, artisan savouries, sweet bakes, craft cheeses, handmade cosmetics, ethical clothing and jewellery, arts & crafts, plastic-free, and charity stalls. All created by a handpicked selection of talented, ethical and sustainable businesses.
7 January 2024, St Peter’s Street