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19 fab, fun things to do this week

Festive fun incoming! The first ever Illuminated trail lights up Windsor, plus Christmas markets, pop up ice rinks and a Champagne fuelled arty farty night out.


Windsor Great Park Illuminated, Windsor, 18 Nov – 9 Jan 2022


Permission to mention the C Word… Christmas is coming and Windsor Great Park’s inaugural illuminated trail is one to book now. The trail, produced by guys behind Hyde Park Winter Wonderland, will feature a field of lights that will extend more than 1,400 sqm, fountains of projected flowers and holograms of woodland creatures. Prepare to be dazzled. Open from 4.30pm-10pm. Tickets: Adults £21.45, Child, £13.20 and Family £74.80.

Harry Hill: Fight, Norden Farm Maidenhead, 17 Nov

Harry Hill Fight

Part stand up, part confessional, Harry Hill – the loon off the telly – takes to the Norden Farm stage to share photos and clips from his huge home movie collection. Yes, he’s got a new book to flog, but the show is packed hull of jokes and audience participation – win the Superfan quiz and take home one of Harry artworks.

Christmas Market, Douai Pavillion Woolhampton, 21 Nov

Woman in blue hat hold baby christmas tree giant silver baubles

Douai Pavillion Christmas Market  

Body swerve the crowds at Winchester Cathedral, the Douai Pavilion Christmas Market is back in West Berkshire. Set in the beautiful rural location of Upper Woolhampton – stalls will be popping up inside and outside the pavilion offering gifts galore from cool local indies, plush food hampers, Xmas trees and more. Grab yourself a mulled wine, pop a mince pie in your mouth and sit yourself on Santa’s knee (yes, there’s a grotto), it’s going to be a cracker. Free entry. Open 10am-7pm.

Candlelit Macbeth, Arlington Arts Newbury, 18 Nov

Something wicked this way comes… and it’s not a hoody wearing yoof giving you attitude (just my kids then). This faithful recreation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth pops up at South Hill Park and Arlington Arts Centre this month. If you love your theatre dark and dramatic (or you have a teen studying it at GCSE), it’s an edge-of-your-seat stuff must-see.

Christmas lights switch ons

Garlands of Christmas lights sparkle in the night

If the fear of empty shelves didn’t trigger a Christmas shopping frenzy, then the annual light switch on will. First up is Eton High Street on 18 Nov with Olympic rower Matthew Pinsent doing the honours this year. Then Newbury, Windsor and Reading all hit the switch on 20 Nov. Newbury’s lights go on at 5pm, Santa’s popping into Parkway and there’s carol singing and more. Windsor will offer late night shopping, stalls and carols from 3pm. In Reading 400,000 lights have been hooked up to the National Grid, with the fun starting at 1pm with a pick and mix of festive food to tempt your tastebuds.

Lapland UK, Whitmoor Forest Ascot, now – 24 Dec

Good news, kids, Santa’s quit the North Pole, perpetual darkness and Northern Lights, to set up shop in the UK. Anyhoo, they’ve only gone and set up shop in Berkshire. Journey through snowy enchanted forests, to Santa’s chalet, where he and his elves need a little assistance in preparing for the 25th December. It’s a four-hour immersive experience so pack the Kendal Mint Cake.

Champagne and Chopin, The Old Court Windsor, 19 Nov


Champagne and Chopin? Sounds right up our street. But this is so much more than listening to someone tinkle the ivories with a fizz-fuelled twinkle in your eye. Concert Pianist Helen Farrar will perform the romantic works or Chopin while Fine Artist Richard Gower creates a live artwork. Two great creatives, you job is to lap it up and drink the bubbles. Drinks 6.30pm for a 7pm start.

Yattendon Christmas Market, Yattendon Village Hall, 20 – 21 Nov

If you’re on the hunt for arty crafty, contemporary gifts this year, check out this super-cool Christmas market from the Modern Makers’ Collective. Local artists and artisans will be selling their handmade gifts in Yattendon Village Hall. You’ll find jewellery, ceramics, decorations, textile gifts and more! Mulled wine and festive flavoured coffee on tap. Free entry. 10am-4pm.

Wokingham Winter on Ice, Cantley Park Wokingham, now – 7 Jan

Ice ice, baby! Wokingham first ever ice rink pops up this month, so we can slip and slide to the fun side in the run up to Christmas. The synthetic rink at Cantley Park opens on 12 Nov and a Christmas Market will open from 24 Nov. Booking is advised.

Windsor On Ice, Alexandra Gardens Windsor, 20 Nov – 2 Jan

Windsor in Ice

Windsor On Ice is back for the winter and whether you’re Olympic standard or a ‘cling on’ like me, they’re great for a family day out, or a fun slippy-slidey Christmas party. This year they’ll be putting up the big screen for super-cool pop up cinema, plus fun fair, food and bar. Sessions are for 45 mins. See you in A&E, I mean on the ice.

The Invisible Dress, HUMOS Caversham, now – 28 Nov

Marilyn Monroe would be seen dead in flannelette PJs, preferring the more seductive Chanel No5 at bedtime. So we’re loving the sounds of HUMOs perfumers exhibition The Invisible Dress. This innovative exhibition from perfumer E. Gabriel De Carvalho, is a sensory catwalk of dress sketches brought to life through fragrance. Call it ‘invisible couture’.

The Jungle Book, Watermill Theatre Newbury, 18 Nov – 31 Dec

The Jungle Book Watermill Theatre Newbury

Be the king of the swingers (not like that, this is a family show), a jungle VIP at The Watermill Theatre’s bookish Christmas production of The Jungle Book. This is a wild and captivating musical adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s classic tale full of warmth, laughter and wonder.

Winter Wonderland, Hills Meadow Reading, now – 3 Jan 2022

Image: Reading Winter Wonderland

It’s back! After a mini break, Reading’s Winter Wonderland will be popping up in Hills Meadow Car Park. Expect more festive fun than a Mariah Carey video. There’s an ice rink, fun fair, Aprés bar, Santa’s grotto, German sausage and lots and lots of mulled wine. It’s free to enter, but you can buy tickets now for Santa’s Grotto, Ice Skating and an unlimited ride pass.

Hockney and Hollywood
, The Base Greenham, now – 28 Nov

Hockney and Hollywood at The Base Greenham 1000x666
Hockney and Hollywood

Hockney in Berkshire? Oh yes he is. The works of Britain’s most famous living artist is on display at The Base in Greenham – and we’re giddy. The legendary David Hockney’s major photomontage Hockney and Hollywood features an extraordinary life-sized nude photographic study of Theresa Russell, commissioned by film director Nicolas Roeg for the film Insignificance.

The 1971 Reading Festival – For The First Time, Reading Museum, now – 29 Jan 2022

If there’s one thing that’ll clear a field full of teenagers, it’s their parents living it up like it’s 1971. Reading Festival is 50 years old this year and to celebrate the UK’s iconic music festival an exhibition of astonishing objects and rare and unseen photos can be seen in Reading Museum’s Sir John Madejski Art Gallery.

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