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Christmas is coming: what's on near Abergavenny and Hereford

Christmas GlowIt's that time of year again, Christmas is coming! Winter is too but that is another story.

When I think of Christmas, I think of the streets filled with Christmas lights and decorations, Christmas markets with stalls popping up in November - Stalls have already started appearing in Cardiff - carol singing, mulled wine, Christmas pudding, mince pies and Christmas dinner in general and obviously… present hunting!

Here are a few things not to miss out within reach of our stores in Abergavenny and Hereford...

Christmas lights

Lighten up the day of the child in you that is amazed by the beauty of Christmas and witness your city put their Christmas clothes on.

On 15th November you will have to face a tough choice: go to Pontypridd at 6pm where you will be welcomed by free rides for children, face-painting and a pyro-technic show, or Step into Christmas in Cardiff from 4pm to 8pm for some late night shopping, a reindeer parade and open-air live music. You can even meet Bob the Builder and Wendy. While you are already in Cardiff have a look at its Christmas market!

On 17th November spend the day in Merthyr Tydfil with its town centre market, real-life reindeers, street performers and kids activities. At 4pm the lights will be switched on.

18th November sees the Hereford Christmas Lights Switch On in High Town. Sunshine Radio will be in the High Town from about 2pm, with the main switch-on programme kicking off about 3.30pm. The same evening sees Gloucester Christmas Lights switch-on, with the procession beginning in Eastgate Street and passing though the city, ending in the Cathedral for a carol concert.

On 24th November you will be faced with another tough choice: you can go to Pontypool or come and see us in Abergavenny to join the fun. In Abergavenny you can enjoy the parade which concludes by the lights being switched on at 4.30pm. Christmas carolling will follow at the Cibi Walk Arcade.

It’s also Pontypool’s turn to get all Christmassy by presenting you with its Christmas Cavalcade at 4.30pm (costumes are provided if you don’t bring your own) followed by the switching on of the lights. Before that enjoy the entertainment, the face painting, and try and meet Santa!

Christmas markets and festivities

Whether you prefer to stay in Abergavenny or Hereford, go to the neighbouring towns or go to bigger cities like Cardiff or Gloucester, we can give you some advice.

Gloucester Quay’s fantastic Victorian Christmas Market returns for a third year. Running from 22nd to 25th November, the historic docks acting as the setting for a 19th-century style market, with hand-made festive gifts, brass bands, food, drink and more.

From 30th November to 2nd December you can head to the Hay Winter Festival in Hay-on-Wye where you can take part in forums, learn to dance on country music, create your own Christmas decorations, make a tour of Hay Castle and so on.

In early December Barcoed and Blackwood welcome you for their own Christmas festivals, followed by Caerphilly on 8th and 9th December. Turn back time and enjoy Caerphilly’s Medieval Fayre with its food and crafts stall, a mix of Medieval Fayre and Christmas fair in the castle vicinity.

Abergavenny’s Christmas Fair will be short-lived but be sure to go on 9th December from 10am to 5pm. Great food to be expected!

It is hard to name every event going on in Cardiff: Cardiff Castle organises Victorian Christmas Tours and Christmas Banquets throughout December and allows you to meet with Santa. Ice-skaters, you have 6 weeks of fun with an open-air ice rink in front of the Civic Centre. Christmas shoppers, you have the choice between the city centre Christmas Markets from 15th November to 23rd December around St John Street – with Santa’s grotto on Queen Street/Churchill Way – and Cardiff Bay Christmas Market from 7th to 9th December, with music in the Millennium Centre to warm you up.

From 5th to 12th December you can hear carol singers in the Pontypridd town centre.

Presents

The best and most difficult thing for Christmas is to find presents for your loved ones. Sometimes you’re on a budget so you want to find great things for a small price. My grandmother used to say that we were too poor to afford to buy cheap. She meant that it was often better to pay more to have a long-lasting quality product instead of having to buy the same thing over and over because of its short life-span.

As well as ordering online, you are always welcome in our Abergavenny and Gloucester stores where it will be our pleasure to help you find the perfect present. We have just received some really cute trolleys with matching backpacks really worth looking at. Men will particularly appreciate our leather wallets. Many items are still on sale so now is the time to do some online Christmas shopping and avoid the last minute shopping nightmare.

You can also try your luck in the many Christmas markets all around South Wales, and/or buy in charity shops. For instance St David’s Foundation in Newport organises a Christmas Fayre on 2nd December at St Pierre Golf & Country club, and different charities are represented in Cardiff at the Charity shop in St John the Baptist Church until 11th December.

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