The calendar of festive events is growing as the focus turns to Christmas preparations in the Banbury area
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While town and village organisations get ready for the switching on of lights and fundraising events and celebrations, the National Trust offers some wonderful themes in their historic properties around the Banbury area.
There’s all the nostalgia of a warm, bustling, 60s country Christmas at Chastleton (near Chipping Norton) this year. In the inimitable style of the lively last owners of Chastleton, the Clutton-Brocks, there are cocktails on the sideboard, dinner on the table, board games and classic Christmas television. You can even get stuck in with a game of Twister. For younger visitors, there’s a festive activity trail. This runs from November 26 – December 17 between Wednesday – Sunday.
For a rare chance to see Chastleton after dark, book an evening Christmas tour with a warming drink and mince pie. See nationaltrust.org.uk/Chastleton
Upton House, near Edge Hill, offers a playful new interpretation of Aesop’s Fables. See the house decorated with fantastical displays that re-imagine some of these ancient stories. From the story of the leopard that boasted about his spotted coat to the fox, who said ‘sour grapes’, each display is inspired by one of the 18th-century Aesop’s Fables, and accompanied by themed candlesticks from the Chelsea Porcelain Manufactory in Upton’s collection.
There will also be an Aesop’s Fables Cheeky Creature Christmas Quest for children, featuring hidden clues around the house and garden (£3 per trail – please collect from reception).
The Children’s Trail will run on selected dates in November and from December 1 – 24, from 12pm-3pm. The Aesop’s Fables Christmas theme in house runs from now until December 24. Other events include wreath-making.
In Wardington Christmas Bingo is being held in the Memorial Hall tomorrow (Friday, November 24). Doors open at 6.30pm for 7pm. Lots of seasonal prizes and free refreshments.
Adderbury Christmas Market takes place on Saturday, November 25 in St Mary's Church between 11am and 4pm. There will be market stalls with a wide selection of gifts, coffee, tea, mulled wine and home made cakes. Santa's Grotto will be open and from 11am - 1pm and 2pm - 4pm.
On Friday, December 1 Chipping Warden’s Christmas Tree Light Up takes place in the Church at 7pm with mulled wine and mince pies from 6pm. Christmas Festive Bingo will be held in the Village Hall on Thursday, December 7. Doors open at 7pm - eyes down at 7.30pm. Refreshments provided. Plenty of seasonal fun and lots of prizes to be won.
Hornton’s Christmas Fayre, in aid church funds, is organised by the Ladies Working Party. It’s the traditional start of a Hornton Christmas and this year is taking place on Saturday, December 2 from 6pm in the church.
"The ladies have been working hard to bring you lots of gift ideas for stocking fillers as well as treats to eat," said co-organiser Jo Langton.
"However, we do need donations too including any chocolate for the new chocolate tombola stall, home-made cakes, sweets, jam or pickles for the produce stall.
“We would also like pre-loved items - toys, puzzles or games, jewellery, pottery items – for the gift stall but they should be in reasonable condition. The Christmas raffle, which is so popular, will also welcome prizes. It will be drawn at 7.30pm.
"There will be mulled wine and nibbles to enjoy, silly games for everyone to have a go at, Christmas music to get us in the mood, so please come along and get into the Christmas spirit. It would be really helpful if you could bring cash please."
Middleton Cheney Christmas Tree Festival invites entries for this festive display in All Saints Church on December 2-3. Please submit an application form, available from the church or Chris Wells on 01295 710076 or [email protected]
All Saints hosts the Middleton Singers’ popular Christmas Concert on Saturday, December 9 with performances at 3pm and 7pm. Entry will be £5 (U-16s free) on the door or you can buy advance tickets from Henry’s Cafe or the library. Tea or coffee and a bar will be available at the interval. There is always a big demand for this event due to the quality of the singing and the opportunity for the audience to participate in some of the carols.
The Pre-school float will be transporting Santa around Middleton on December 9 – 10 from 3.30pm giving children a chance to wave to Santa before he heads to the North Pole.
On Sunday, December 17 from 12pm-3pm Henry’s Cafe hosts a small grotto for children to share their Christmas wishes and receive a small gift, with all proceeds going to the Parkinsons charity. There will be drinks and cakes and festive songs. The organisers ask £5 per child to visit Santa.
Hanwell’s HanFestive Christmas Market takes place at St Peter's Church on Sunday, December 3 from 11am to 4pm. The church will be brimming with the best in local crafts and producers. Entry is £4 - children under 16 free.
King’s Sutton’s Christmas Fayre is on Saturday December 9 from 1pm-6pm, partly in the Millennium Memorial Hall and partly on the Rec with the Christmas Tree lights switch-on at 5pm. Included will be funfair, stalls, bar, food, music and Santa’s Grotto. There are still some spaces for craft stalls with gazebos for the outside pitches.
Adderbury Christmas Tree Festival takes place in St Mary's Church from December 8 – 10, ending with a carol service on Sunday, December 10 at 4.30pm. There will be refreshments and live music over the weekend. Free entrance with donations to Oxfordshire Mind and the work of St Mary's Church.
Send your Christmas event details to the Banbury Guardian, with a picture if possible, at [email protected]