2018 Christmas at Charlecote
At the end of the year in which we have looked at the impact of the First World War on the Lucy family and those around them, we are taking 1918 as our inspiration for Christmas too.
Advance booking essential to visit the house during December weekends and Christmas Eve.
By Christmas 1918 every family was touched by the losses of loved ones in the First World War, but everyone was determined that there should be a celebration of the end of conflict. The festivities should be a jolly occasion for the sake of those who had returned and - of course - for the children.
Our volunteer research group has looked at the Lucy family records and local information in the archives of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.
Thankfully, the three Lucy sons all eventually returned from the First World War, but were undoubtedly scarred by their experiences of the conflict. Rationing was still in place and the family, their servants, and the local villagers made the best of what they could acquire.
If you'd like to know more about our volunteer's beautiful gingerbread house, inspired by remembrance, you can read her blog here.
Pre-book to celebrate Christmas with us
- The grounds and outbuildings are open every day from 9am to 4pm.
- The public (ground floor only) rooms of the house will be open and decorated for Christmas (11am-3.30pm):
Friday to Monday 30 November-3 December
Friday to Monday 7-10 December
Every day 14-24 December.
- Entry to the house at weekends and Christmas Eve will be by free timed ticket ONLY, and MUST be booked at least 24 hours in advance. Christmas Eve booking listed separately.
- Normal admission prices apply to non-National Trust members. Under 5s are free.
(Please note: the handbook says we're closed on Christmas Eve, but the whole property is open).
We are enormously grateful to the Lucy family for sharing their private archives with us throughout 2018. The family still lives in one wing of the house which is why visitors are unable to see the whole house.
Naughty or nice?
Father Christmas will be here from Friday-Monday each week. Appointments are all sold out now, but if you haven't booked to see him, do give him a wave in the summerhouse, he'll be checking his Nice List for everyone!
Summerhouse appointments - please book 1 place for each child, no need to book for adults.
Breakfasts - please book 1 place for each person attending, adults and children.
Jingle all the way...
Our research found many reports of enthusiastic carol singing which was hugely important to everyone as part of the Christmas celebrations at this time, from little bands of children going door to door, to choirs visiting convalescing soldiers in nursing homes.
What could be jollier than celebrating the season with us - if your choir would like to come and sing carols for our visitors at Charlecote on any of the December weekends, do get in touch and find out which dates are still available. All ages welcome.
What’s on your list?
The Servants’ Hall shop has the best of all the National Trust Christmas ranges in stock with gifts and treats for everyone, and tastings too.
We have Christmas decorations and gifts, as well as local pot-grown Christmas trees and festive wreaths for sale through December in our Plant Centre shop next to the car park (open the same days as the house above, 10.00am-3.00pm).
Bring us some figgy pudding
Our volunteers in the Victorian kitchen will be cooking up lots of festive goodies based on what was available immediately after the end of the Great War. Pop in to warm up by the fire if it's chilly outside.
Please note that we don't always have enough volunteers to cook every day though. If your New Year resolution is to try something new, how about joining the friendly team?
The Orangery tea-room will be preparing hundreds of mince pies and plenty of hot soup – just what you need after a walk round the parkland this winter.
Why not get together with friends, family or colleagues for a traditional Christmas meal in the Orangery? There's no need to book, our Christmas menu will be available Monday-Friday (12 noon-2.30pm) every week in December until Christmas.
We're closed only on 25 December, but don’t forget that all the grounds are open on Boxing Day – try out those new hats and scarves and walk off Christmas dinner around the parkland with friends and family.