Your East London Christmas Roundup

If your small is just starting to understand Santa Claus and hasn’t yet reached the stage of demanding a play station a mobile phone and the latest pair of Nikes, Christmas can be truly magical. Savour these moments and make the most of them by visiting some of these delightful East London Christmas events


Stratford Circus

The Gruffalo

There’s no such thing as a Gruffalo –is there?

This festive season head to Stratford Circus for this most contemporary of Christmas Classics. This critically acclaimed version from Tall Stories brings Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s whimsical story to life. Full of charming characters and humour, your family found a day out and the day out was good!

When:Various times and dates Wednesday 28th November- Monday 24th December

Where: Stratford Circus, Theatre Square, London E15 1BX


The Halfmoon Theatre

Visit the Halfmoon Theatre this Christmas for two festive shows.


Join Zoo Keeper Sue and mischievous Little Monkey on Christmas Eve, and discover numbers are all around us. Packed with bold, engaging puppets and a musical mash-up, the makers of Dogs Don’t Do Ballet bring the universally popular song to life. Ages 2-6


Three Kings

Three weary travellers from far off lands meet by chance as night approaches, all looking to the darkening skies. As shadows draw in, they eventually overcome their suspicions of each other and exchange stories; stories of love, stories of loss, stories of kings. Three Kings fuses storytelling, song, dance and puppetry in a sparkling show about finding out where you belong, overcoming your differences and listening to the secret stargazer in each of us.


FiveLittleMonkeys : Saturday 15th December 11am & 2pm

Three Kings: Thursday 6th December -Saturday 8th Dec various times

Where: Half Moon Young People’s Theatre, 43 White Horse Road, London E1 0ND


Discovery Children’s Story Centre

Festive Storytelling and Gift The Polar Express

Children aged 3-7 will love climbing aboard a train to the North Pole at the Discover Children’s Story Centre. They will get to meet some very special people and find out what happens if you truly believe…. Every child will leave with a free gift of the The Polar Express book. Sure to become a Christmas classic in your home if it isn’t already.

Younger children aged 0-3 will love the Polar Journey also based on The Polar Express. They’ll experience the sounds, sights and smells of a sensory adventure to the North Pole and help to find the magic Christmas Bell!

The Polar Express

When: 8th December – 6th January £2 incl. a gift for every child

Polar Journey

When: Monday 3rd Dec – 6th Jan Free with Day Pass

Where: Discover Children’s Story Centre 383-387 High St, London E15 4QZ



The Winter Forest

Mrs Fogg’s Winter Terrace will be transformed this season as 300 snow-covered pine trees create a wintery forest of festive cheer. Yum to the butter rum and mulled wine as you enjoy live music from various acts including emerging talent and well-known busking groups, professional and amateur choirs.  Bring your family along for a live Christmas Carol Singalong every Wednesday or take part in some family crafting fun on Saturday the 24th  of November and the 9th of December. All of the trees from The Winter Forest will be chipped and recycled with the help of Bee Urban, a not for profit beekeeping group.

When: 6th November- 24th December

Where: Broadgate, London EC2M 3WA


Denis Severs House Christmas

If you’ve never been to Denis Severs House it’s truly worth a visit especially this time of year. An East London Christmas experience like no other. Visit on a Sunday or a Monday and explore the history of Huguenot Refugees who settled in the heart of Spitalfields. The house has been left to replicate a room as if its inhabitants had only left temporarily, inviting all of your senses on a journey through time. All with painstaking attention to detail and some surprising features, keep your eye out for the Gilbert & George tiling. This one is for older children who don’t have to be told continuously not to touch things and can appreciate the beauty and detail.

Where: 18 Folgate St, London, E1 6BX

When: 25th November -5th January

Sundays 12-4pm (last admission 3:15)

Mondays 12-2pm (last admission 1:15pm)

Tours take aprox 45mins


Stratford Theatre East

Sleeping Beauty

Theatre Royal Stratford East brings you a brand new festive adventure! Sleeping Beauty has been in deep sleep for a hundred years (sounds lush right?) but wakes to find herself in a new city with a cruel fairy hot on her heels. With original songs, plenty of humour and a heavy sprinkling of magic this panto is bound to make the who family giggle!

When: Saturday 1st December – Saturday 12th Janurary 2019

Where: Stratford Theatre East, Gerry Raffles Square, London E15 1BN


frost fair_edited

Museum of London Docklands

Victorian Santa’s Grotto & A Christmas Carol

Bring your little ones to meet Santa in Sailor Town! The Museum of London Docklands gets all dressed up in Dickensian finest for Christmas and this year visitors will get to travel back in time. Familiar characters are brought to life in a Docklands Christmas Carol running the 1st to the 9th of December. Meet Scrooge, the Cratchits, and some friendly ghosts in this immersive family event and get a photo with a proper Father Christmas while you are there. Visitors on the 22nd and 23rd will have the chance to make some festive greetings cards and paper decorations inspired by festive celebrations from around the world.

Santa’s Grotto

When: 1st & 2nd, 7th-9th and 14th – 23rd December

A Christmas Carol runs from the 1st -9th 11am, 12.30pm, 2.30pm & 4pm. Performances are free, but ticketed

Where: Museum of London Docklands, No.1 Warehouse, Hertsmere Rd, Canary Wharf, London E14 4AL


Sutton House

History of Christmas and Santa’s Grotto

The oldest halls of Hackney have been decked out in Christmas finest. Explore 500 years of Christmas traditions throughout Sutton House and experience the festive period through the eyes of the Tudors, the Georgians, the Victorians, and even 1980s Londoners.

Discover why we call St Stephen’s day ‘Boxing Day’ along with the origin of the Christmas Cracker and other traditions. Visit Santa at the weekends and enjoy mulled wine and mince pies. Explore your creativity with artist led crafts or make spiced orange pomander balls. You’ll even get a taste of an East London Christmas from the 1980s telling the story of the squatters who once called Sutton House home.

When: Saturday 24th November to Sunday 23rd December, Wednesday- Sunday, 12pm -4:30pm.

Where: Sutton House, 2 & 4 Homerton High St, London E9 6JQ


Hackney Empire’s


Is Christmas still Christmas without a pantomime? The Hackney Empire celebrates their 20th year with Aladdin!

All the way in Ha-Ka-Ney, young Aladdin dreams of finding love and making his fortune. When he discovers an enchanted lamp and meets a mysterious genie, it looks like all his wishes are about to come true – with the help of tap-dancing pandas and his larger-than-life mum, can he win the hand of his Princess? Or will an evil magician, some madcapped policemen and a very large pile of laundry stand in his way?

With a star studded cast straight from the West End, great song and dance numbers and plenty of chances to boo and cheer there is good reason this East London Christmas pantomime is in its 20th year!

When: 24th November – 6th January

Where: Hackney Empire, 291 Mare St, London E8 1EJ


ZAPspace Trampoline Park

Jolly Jumpers Day

Keep cozy this Christmas with a Snazzy Christmas jumper and warm fuzzy feelings and join in the fun at ZAPspace’s Jolly Jumpers Day. Jump to the jingling beat and boo and cheer as Santa takes on the Grinch on the Balance Beam. 20% of all full price tickets sold will go to Save The Children and there will be a professional photographer to take a festive photo of your family for only £10.  Other fun activities to participate in for some jingley jangley loose change include an elf workshop with take home Christmas Ornaments, face painting and a raffle with some Big Bouncy Prizes! Save the Children does important relief work around the world helping children in crisis as well as helping vulnerable children in the UK.  A great way to help a worthy cause and have a lot of fun.

When: Sunday 16th December 11am-4pm (timed activities throughout the day)

Where: ZAPspace Trampoline Park, 369 Stratford High St, London, E15 4QZ


Tower of London Ice Rink_edited

Tower of London

The Tower of London comes alive with all the seasonal fun and festivities of the Victorian era.

New tastes have seen the Tower transformed into a ‘Gothic’ monument to the history of Britain, and countless visitors flock to enjoy the Crown Jewels, arms and armour and sinister dungeons.

Discover how our modern impressions of Christmas and the Tower were shaped in the era of Dickens and Queen Victoria. Why not book your family in for some ice skating while you’re there? No shame if you need a penguin to hold you up.

When: 27th– 31st December 2018 11am-3pm

Where: Tower of London, St Katharine’s & Wapping, London EC3N 4AB


Museum of London

The Museum of London has a Victorian Santa’s Grotto for your festive photos and lots of activities throughout the season while you are there. The Museum will also have interactive storytelling and creative workshops as guests aged 5+ learn the history of the Frost Fair when the Thames was so cold it would freeze between the 1st -9th December.   For high action festive fun complete with cops and robbers visit the museum on the 29th-31st of December. Help save Christmas and catch Granny Swagg before she steals all the toys on Christmas Eve in a fun free pantomime inspired performance for ages 5+.


Santas Grotto various times 1st-23rd December

Where: Museum of London,150 London Wall, London EC2Y 5HN


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