Burlesque with The Hundred Club at The Mill in Banbury

Let the Christmas season begin! And with a stunning array of festive options, both indoors and out, for young and old, some free, some ticketed, all over Oxfordshire, we’ve picked the best! So get booking and put these dates in the diary!

  1. Cinderella, Oxford Playhouse – Until Jan 8 – Join Cinderella, and her best friend Buttons the mouse, on a midnight carriage ride like no other to the Playhouse Panto Party of the year! read our review here The handsome but hapless Prince Charming is looking for a wife. But the devilish Dandina has plans of her own. Can the Fairy make sure that true love wins through and help our heroes to stop Dandina’s wicked plans? https://www.oxfordplayhouse.com/events/cinderella-panto#gallery_361327-4

2) Tis the season to be jolly! Join OSJ this December for a special New Year’s Eve Concert at Dorchester Abbey with a selection of joyful overtures and dances. https://www.osj.org.uk/events/

OSJ at Dorchester Abbey

3) A Christmas Carol at Didcot’s Cornerstone from Saturday 17 to Saturday 24 December. Watch Mr Scrooge travel through time to learn the true meaning of Christmas. and confront his Christmas past, present and future in this stunning new adaptation complete with a cast of local children. http://www.cornerstone-arts.org/whats/christmas-carol

A Christmas Carol is at Didcot Cornerstone this Christmas

4) Creation’s The Tale of Beauty and The Tail of The Beast at The North Wall. Until January 7 2023. read our review here Based on the original 1740 book, and recounted by a chaotic 18th century travelling theatre troupe, this is classic Creation, described as a cross between The Play That Goes Wrong and a magical fairytale. Book at  https://creationtheatre.co.uk/show/beauty-and-the-beast/

Creation’s Delvene Pitt

5) Christmas at Cogges Manor Farm in Witney with Santa’s GrottoSaturdays and Sundays and for the last week before Christmas until December 23. Enjoy the Manor House, festively decorated as ‘A Christmas Carol’ – look out for some ghastly surprises upstairs! Meet Father Christmas in the old stable and see the grounds lit up after dusk. Say hello to the animals, and warm up with seasonal treats from Cogges Kitchen cafe. Shop for pressies at the gift shop or pick up your perfect Christmas treeA festive treat for all the family to enjoy, from toddlers to grandparents. https://www.cogges.org.uk/Event/christmas-at-cogges


6) Dick Whittington The Theatre, Chipping Norton, Until Jan 15 Join Dick on this globetrotting adventure full of non-stop laughter, fantastic music and sheer silliness. From the chaotic streets of Victorian London to jungle palaces, the world’s worst cook to the first female explorer – and of course not forgetting the sweeties – this show has it all written by Artistic Director John Terry. https://www.chippingnortontheatre.com/whats-on/dick-whittington

Queen Rat and the Pippins in Dick Whittington

7) The Royal Christmas Pudding, Story Museum, until 1 January – a magical, musical storytelling show for families. Meet brother and sister Ben and Sally, whose Dad was the royal cook. Sally has always dreamt of following in her father’s footsteps but Ben is given the job instead. Using stories, songs and lessons their dad taught them, they realise the only way to make their wishes come true is to pull together. https://www.storymuseum.org.uk/whats-on/the-royal-christmas-pudding

The Royal Christmas Pudding

8) Oxford Official Festive Fun Group Tour – This brand-new guide-led tour, takes in Oxford’s Christmas lights and sights with tales of the city’s Christmases past, present and future until December 23. This seasonal tour weaves its way through the city, past University colleges and along gargoyled alleyways. Admire Oxford’s dreaming spires, the twinkling Christmas tree in historic Broad Street and the smells and atmosphere of the Christmas Market. https://www.oxfordofficialwalkingtours.org/tours/festive-fun-private-group-tour/

Oxford Official Festive Fun Group Tour

9) Christmas at Blenheim Palace – Until January 2. The festive extravaganza, features a magical outdoor illuminated light trail. the creative re-telling of the story of The Snow Queen inside the Palace and an artisan Christmas Market. Enjoy over a million lights as seasonal sounds fill the air, glittering tunnels of light, dancing lakeside reflections and trees drenched in jewel-like colour. http://blenheimpalace.com/Christmas

Christmas at Blenheim Palace @SonyMusic MyChristmasTrails

10) The Artweeks Christmas Season – Until Christmas hundreds of Oxfordshire artists and makers are opening their studios and taking part in festive fairs and pop-up exhibitions where you can browse and buy Christmas gifts made locally. From Chadlington, Creopredy, Culham, Iffley and Summertown, Abingdon to Adderbury, Witney to Wallingford and many more. Or go to the on-line Art Showcase for Christmas, an on-line Winter Show featuring work by 100 artists from wall art and 3D pieces to calendars, ornaments, silver goods, porcelain vases and glass. Find a list of events at www.artweeks.org/christmas

etain O’Carroll Winter Lights

11) Mamma Mia, New Theatre, until Sat 31 Dec. read our review here We all know the story so join the cast on their Greek island paradise and immerse yourself in this well known musical about love, friendship and identity told through the timeless songs of ABBA, as Sophie’s hunts down the father she’s never known in time for her wedding. https://www.atgtickets.com/shows/mamma-mia/new-theatre-oxford/

Mamma Mia. Brinkhoff-Moegenburg

12) Hundred Watt Club: Burlesque Christmas Special, Thursday December 22, The Mill Banbury – Jam packed full of festive, glittering showgirls, bawdy comedy, classic vaudeville and awe inspiring circus acts. Seductive, sublime and a little bit ridiculous – enjoy an evening of vintage inspired, Christmas themed entertainment. https://www.themillartscentre.co.uk/shows/hundred-watt-burlesque-christmas-special/

Hundred Watt Club Christmas

13) Crumple’s Christmas Adventure, until Sat Dec 31, BT Studio, for those age 3-8. Unwrapped, scrumpled and thrown away Crumple’s Christmas adventure begins as the wrapping paper figure sets off on a quest to find the forest where he belongs. He discovers snow and trees, lots of fun and music, and makes new friends along the way. https://www.oxfordplayhouse.com/events/crumples-christmas-adventure

14) The Ugly Duckling, OFS, Tuesday 20 – Friday 23 December. Running at 10am and 2.30pm for those age 2+. Join Dotty – a plucky little duckling on an adventure across the pond to discover who she is and find her place in the world. Dotty meets a whole flock of farmyard birds, who show her that our differences are what make us special. A twinkling, heartwarming, relaxed and inclusive performance for all the family at Christmas. https://oldfirestation.org.uk/whats-on/the-ugly-duckling/

The Ugly Duckling at OFS

15) Hunt For The Lost Toys Trail, Oxford until December 31. Join this free, fun, Christmas trail, running until the New Year. All you need is your smart phone to take you around ten Oxford city centre spots searching for the Christmas Imps using QR codes. Starting at Hoyle’s, and finishing at Oxford Castle and Prison, take in Oxford’s stunning landmarks from the Radcliffe Camera to the Covered Market. https://www.oxlightfest.com/hunt-for-the-lost-toys

Hunt For The Lost Toys Trail

16) Christmas Laser Maze, Ridgeway Adventures, Didcot. December 1-31. One of only five such sites in the UK, this laser maze (not to be confused with laser tag) becomes ‘Operation Grinch’, a themed Christmas heist experience, throughout December! Players will have the opportunity to steal presents from underneath a Christmas tree, carefully navigating the lasers to avoid waking the sleeping family you’re stealing from! Book at www.ridgewayadventures.co.uk 

Christmas Laser Maze