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Step back in time and enjoy a Victorian Christmas with Santa
A medieval castle in Staffordshire is to provide two special treats in one during the much-anticipated run-up to Christmas. Tamworth Castle is inviting visitors from near and far to celebrate a proper Victorian Christmas inside the historic building, And, at the same time, children will be able to embark on a special Santa Trail which culminates in meeting Father Christmas himself. The double treat will be available at Tamworth Castle throughout most of December, but spaces are likely to be at a premium so people are urged to book early to avoid disappointment. The Santa Trails will be held during weekends in December between 10am and 4pm, from Saturday 7 December through to Monday 23 December. Visitors attending this traditional Christmas event will be welcomed by a member of the Victorian household, who will lead the group on a tour of the castle rooms, where they will be invited to help the Victorian household prepare for Santa's visit and the festive celebrations.
There are plenty of activities to get involved with, including cutting out gingerbread men, making traditional Christmas cards, writing a letter to Santa and joining in with some Victorian parlour games before meeting the main man himself. Although Christmas has been celebrated for hundreds of years, the Victorians helped shape it into the celebration that it is today. It was the classic 1843 novel A Christmas Carol, written by Charles Dickens, which encouraged middle and upper-class Victorians to redistribute their wealth and give money and gifts to the poor? Other festive origins credited to the Victorians include carols such as O Come All Ye Faithful and Once in Royal David's City, the Christmas cracker - invented by a London sweet maker in 1843 - and the Christmas tree, which was popularised by Queen Victoria's German husband Prince Albert, who brought the tradition to Britain from his home country.
Father Christmas is guest of honour at Victorian Christmas
Councillor John Chesworth, Tamworth Borough Council's Cabinet member for Culture and Operational Services, said: "Families can enjoy a tour of the castle and meet the Victorian characters, bringing festive cheer to all. Children of all ages will have the opportunity to meet Santa at the end of the tour and receive an age-appropriate gift. Don't forget to bring your cameras to get a picture of your little ones with the man himself. With so many of our Christmas traditions to thank the Victorians for, what better way than getting involved in the festivities in a truly historic setting. You're sure to find your Christmas spirit at Tamworth Castle this December." For more information, or to book tickets, call the Tamworth Information Centre on 01827 709618, or visit www.tamworthcastle.co.uk. This is a specific ticket-only event and the castle will be closed for general admission throughout December.