Things to do in London this Festive Season
Starting on Saturday, at the Barbican Centre, with Glorious Handel by Candlelight and The Very Best of John Williams, the Raymond Gubbay Christmas Festival gets into full swing over the weekend. Handel’s best works will be played in a candlelit setting and Williams’ most memorable scores will be performed by the London Concert Orchestra, including Star Wars, Harry Potter, Indiana Jones and ET. Book tickets on the website.
The View from The Shard have created a special edition of the game in which players can buy The London Eye, Wembley Stadium, Buckingham Palace and The Shard itself, and to celebrate its release they'll be turning their viewing platfrom on level 69 of the shiny skyscraper into a giant version of a Monopoly board. There will be huge game pieces and Chance cards for the daring, and the new version of the game will be available to buy in the boutiques both on level 1 (which is free to enter) and level 68 (accessible with general admission).
This Sunday, experience an underground Christmas at the Brunel Museum. The Grand Entrance Hall recently reopened to the public for the first time in 150 years. Some of the museum's well-known supporters, including Jo Brand, Michael Palin and Zoe Wanamaker, have collaborated to produce a book of illustrated Brunel-inspired tales and each Sunday in December museum visitors can hear extracts told by the museum director. No booking is required, and the performances take place on the hour, every hour from noon until 3pm.
This weekend you can enjoy a snowy sleigh rides through Richmond Park (although it's not pulled by reindeer, and there probably won't be much snow). This 60-minute tour of Richmond Park in a horse-drawn carriage allows you to admire the stark beauty of the park in winter. Before you set off you'll be treated to warm refreshments and given a guided tour of the working stables at Holly Lodge. Sessions start at noon and 1.30pm. Booking is highly recommended.