The Night Before Christmas at Mottisfont
'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse... Scenes from Clement C. Moore's much-loved poem are brought to life at Mottisfont this Christmas, with exquisitely decorated rooms and a festive family trail.
The Night Before Christmas runs from 24 November – 6 January, 10am-4pm (excluding 24 and 25 December). Normal property admission price only.
Outdoor decorations make sure you're given a festive welcome, from giant wreaths on the entry gates to floral displays on the bridges that lead into the grounds. The front of the house has been dressed in purple, gold and green foliage by floristry students from Highbury College.
Follow pathways illuminated by decorated lanterns to discover Father Christmas’s sleigh in front of the house; and, of course, Dasher, Dancer, Prancer and Vixen – all crafted from willow.
Inside the house, oversized books and set-dressed rooms take you through verses of the poem, from children’s dreams to hints of Father Christmas’s impending visit. And, unlike the poem, the mice are definitely stirring here, hidden in nooks and crannies. Spot a carolling choir, tiny Christmas helpers, and little robed monks hinting at Mottisfont’s medieval past.
Rooms are enhanced by luxurious, traditionally-styled decorations, with festive flower arrangements, mantelpieces draped with dramatic swags, and trees sparkling with hundreds of baubles. A 14ft tree, surrounded by a towering pile of children’s presents, takes centre stage in the Whistler Room as a grand finale.
Mottisfont’s Christmas involves creative work from all staff and volunteers, including a craft group and garden florists, who come together to create decorations and dress the house and grounds to wow visitors year after year.
Any installations have to be carefully planned to protect the historic nature of the house and grounds, and need to be durable to last the winter. Foliage for outdoor decorations is cut and collected from the managed woodland on Mottisfont’s wider estate. Everything – and everyone - comes together to create a Christmas that’s truly unique to Mottisfont.