Escape the high street with the National Trust’s Christmas markets

Press release
Waddesdon Manor Christmas fair at night
Published : 24 Aug 2017 Last update : 22 Sep 2017

If you’re looking for somewhere special to do the Christmas shopping this year, look no further than the National Trust. With picturesque Christmas markets selling gorgeous handmade crafts, delicious local food and extra-special gifts, the National Trust is putting the magic back into the Christmas shopping experience.

Escape the high street crowds and indulge yourself in locally made mulled wine and mince pies, stroll through winter gardens that glisten and sparkle in the frost and soak up the festive spirit whilst finding special gifts for your loved ones. 

You can warm yourself with the knowledge that each magical day out supports the conservation charity to look after special places for future generations to enjoy. 

Here are the National Trust’s pick of the best festive fairs for 2017:

South West

Buckland Abbey, Devon
Christmas craft & food fair 11 & 12 Nov, 10am - 4.30pm

Discover the ideal gift this Christmas, as over 40 stalls of the finest local food, drink and crafts arrive at Buckland. From glass jewellery to home-made fudge, there are plenty of  delights to tempt you along with hot food, warming drinks and music to get you in the festive spirit. If you fancy a few moments' peace, treat yourself to a wander around the gardens and estate, where you can soak up the autumn colours and admire the views across the Tavy Valley.
Free park and ride service running every 10 minutes from Harrowbeer Aerodrome.
Price: £3 entry (NT members free)  

Montacute, Somerset
Levels’ Best Craft & Farmers’ Markets, 30 Sep, 28 Oct, 25 Nov & 16 Dec, 10am - 2pm

Held in the old Stable Yard at Montacute, this ever-popular 'best in Somerset' market is a must for those who like top quality local produce and crafts. Each market hosts around 30 stalls, selling a variety of fresh, artisan and traditionally-made food and drink. Local crafts also feature, so you’re sure to find the perfect Christmas gift.  
Price: Normal admission applies 

London and South East

Ightham Mote, Kent 
Mini Christmas market, 2 & 3 Dec, 10am to 3.30pm (Father Christmas 11am to 2.30pm)

Ightham Mote hosts a selection of local Christmas stalls to stock up on special festive gifts. There will be music and a chance to visit the house dressed for a late Victorian Christmas with an American twist. Children can get stuck into craft activities and tackle the seasonal trail. For those who’ve been extra good, there’s a chance to say hello to Father Christmas. 
Price: Free event, normal admission applies  

Stowe, Buckinghamshire
Christmas shopping season, 13 Nov – 17 Dec, 10am - 4pm

A select group of stallholders will be back at Stowe this year to present their homemade and traditional products for sale. They’ll be in the historic Parlour Rooms at New Inn, a former coaching inn on the estate. There’ll be music, carol singers and warming drinks every weekend – the perfect start to the festive season.
Price: Free entry 

Hughenden, Buckinghamshire
Wycombe Court Artists present, 24 – 26 Nov, 10am - 3pm

Wycombe Court Artists is a collective of local craftspeople who work in a variety of media, including painting, sculpture, ceramics, jewellery and more. Visit Hughenden to see their work on show, and pick up some unique Christmas gifts.
Price: Normal admission applies 


Wimpole, Cambridgeshire
Christmas Craft Fair, 11 & 12 November, 10am-5pm

Wimpole's festive season kicks off with their enticing Christmas Craft Fair. Find unique and unusual presents, from handicrafts to food and tasty tipples. When you’re all shopped out you can head for the Stable Block café to enjoy mulled wine and tasty mince pies.
Price: £4 entry (inc NT members) 


Hanbury Hall, Worcestershire
Handmade & Artisan Fayre, 4-5 & 11-12 Nov, 10am - 4pm

Escape the high street this Christmas, and instead pick up your festive shopping at the Hanbury Hall Fayre. Browse beautiful stalls from local artisan producers, and find one-off gifts and indulgent treats. There will also be live music, food and drink to get you in the festive mood.
Price: £2 entry, National Trust members free 

Upton House and Gardens, Warwickshire
Christmas Gift Fair, 2 & 3 Dec, 11am - 4pm

Join the festive fun at Upton House with local stallholders offering handmade gifts, beautiful crafts and tasty food and drink. See the house decorated for Christmas using handmade crafts and warm up with tasty food in the restaurant. 
Price: Normal admission applies 

Tattershall Castle, Lincolnshire
Christmas Market, 18 & 19 Nov, 11am - 4pm

Stuck for Christmas gift ideas? Visit Tattershall Castle to find unique presents and stocking fillers hand-made by Lincolnshire craftspeople and food suppliers. There will be around 50 stalls selling a variety of crafts and produce ranging from artisan breads and various flavours of fudge to scented candles and Christmas decorations. Grab a mince pie, slurp some mulled wine and browse to your heart’s content.
Price: free entry. 


Souter Lighthouse & The Leas, Tyne & Wear 
Christmas craft fair, 18 & 19 November, 10am – 4pm

For a more relaxed Christmas shopping experience, head to Souter’s Christmas craft fair where you can browse handmade crafts, gifts, jewellery and cards. When it’s time to take a break from shopping, indulge yourself with some seasonal treats in the Lighthouse Café.
Price: free entry  

Gibside, Tyne and Wear 
Festive market, Saturday 2 & 16 December, 10am – 3pm

Pick up the perfect Christmas gift at Gibside’s festive market this December.  Explore a variety of market stalls where you can buy artisan food and high quality crafts direct from local producers in the marketplace – it’s the ideal place to find that perfect present. Afterwards, why not explore Gibside’s landscape garden, try the Christmas folklore trail and pop into the pub or tuck into a tasty pizza from the resident pizza maker.
Price: Normal admission applies

East Riddlesden Hall, Yorkshire 
Christmas Market, 16 & 17 December, 3.30 – 7pm

Festooned with sparkling fairy lights, the romantic Airedale Barn at East Riddlesden Hall makes the perfect setting for a Christmas market. There’ll be a great choice of food and drink to sample and festive cheer in abundance. As well as buying  last minute presents, you can also see the Christmas story brought to life as never before at East Riddlesden. Journey through the lamplit gardens in search of a room at the inn (3.30 – 4.45pm) then line the paths by the pond as a real donkey carries Mary and Joseph to the Great Barn at 5pm, before singing carols under the historic beams of the Great Barn.
Price: £2 per person including entry to the Twilight Christmas event 


Llanerchaeron, Ceredigion
Christmas Fair, 2 & 3 Dec, 11am – 4pm

The Llanerchaeron Christmas Fair is back and it’s bigger and better than ever before. Soak up the magic of the festive season and enjoy a great day’s shopping with over 70 local food and craft stalls. With mince pies, mulled wine and a special visit from Father Christmas it’s sure to get you in the Christmas spirit. 
Price: £4 per adult. NT members and children free 

Dinefwr, Carmarthenshire
Traditional Christmas Fair, 25 & 26 Nov, 10am – 6pm

Looking for a truly festive atmosphere? Head to the beautiful National Trust mansion of Dinefwr, where the courtyard will be brimming with stalls offering tasty seasonal treats and handmade gifts. Hear festive choirs and bands whist sipping a free glass of mulled wine, listen to seasonal storytelling or join in with family craft activities.
Price: Normal admission applies 

Colby Woodland Garden, Pembrokeshire
Winter Fair, 18 & 19 Nov, 10am - 4pm

Start off the festive season when Colby Woodland Garden hosts its annual winter fair. Visitors can make a start on seasonal shopping and browse a range of traditional stalls, with local arts, crafts and homemade produce on offer. Once you’re all shopped out you can grab a moment of peace in the woodlands or take a bracing walk along the beach, and then cosy up in the Bothy tea-room.
Price: Free entry 

Southwood Farm, Pembrokeshire
Christmas Fair, 9 Dec, 10.30am - 4pm

Many of our modern Christmas traditions come from the Victorian era, so where better to celebrate the festive season than the former Victorian farm at Southwood? The outbuildings will be converted into a winter wonderland, brimming with stalls where you can find finishing touches and last-minute Christmas treats. Make a wish on the wish tree and uncover the story of Southwood at the shearing shed exhibition.
Price: Free entry 

Northern Ireland

The Argory, County Armagh
Christmas Fair, 2 & 3 December, 11.30am – 5.30pm

The festive period isn’t complete without a visit to The Argory’s Christmas Fair. This year, the Courtyard will be packed with over 40 craft, food and gift stalls, stocking locally produced and festive goods from crafts to cupcakes and cider. There’ll also be plenty of hot food and drinks to help keep out the chill, plus a carousel and face-painting to keep little ones entertained. Once you’ve explored the stalls, head inside to see the house dressed in traditional Victorian décor and hear how the family celebrated Christmas in the 1800’s.
Price: Normal admission applies 

Rowallane Garden, County Down
Yuletide Market, 9 & 10 December, 11am – 5pm

Soak up the festive atmosphere of Rowallane’s annual Yuletide Market. With local craft and food stalls, family festive activities and wreaths made by the Rowallane gardening team, it’s the perfect place to get into the Christmas spirit. You might even bump into Father Christmas.
Price: Normal admission applies 

Castle Ward, County Down 
Craft fair, 25 & 26 November, 11am – 4pm

Start your festive season with a visit to Crafted at Castle Ward. Find the perfect bespoke gift for that special person this Christmas. Meet some of Northern Ireland’s leading artists and makers from the world of textiles, ceramics and jewellery and even have a go yourself with some hand on demonstrations to inspire you.
Price: Normal admission applies 

Every single visit supports the National Trust’s conservation work, looking after special places for people to enjoy for years to come.