15 things to do in Lancashire this weekend - December 8 - 11, 2018

There's some great events taking place over the coming days:

Gandini Juggling: Sigma is being presented at the Nuffield Theatre in Lancaster
Gandini Juggling: Sigma is being presented at the Nuffield Theatre in Lancaster

PAID: Festive Elf Trail, Blackpool, until Sunday, January 6

A new festive trail has been unveiled at SEA LIFE Blackpool, offering young visitors the chance to get onto Santa’s ‘Nice List’. The Naughty Elf Trail enables youngsters to explore a festive adventure past the rock pool, under the ocean tunnel and through the rainforest at the aquarium. If they succeed, a place on Santa’s ‘Nice List’ awaits along with a special festive SEA LIFE pop badge, which are highly collectable. The trail is included within the standard entry price, along with an elf trail pack. Visit www.visitsealife.com/blackpool/ to book.

FREE: St Catherine’s Santa Dash, Preston, Sunday, December 9

St Catherine's Santa Dash has moved to Preston Docks this year

This year the popular St Catheriene’s Santa Dash descends on Preston Docks. Supporters dressed as Santa will be doing two laps of the docks - which is a three mile run, setting off at 11am. If you would like to join in, the Santa Dash is open to anyone aged 12 and over, and costs just £10 per adult and £5 for under 18s to sign up, which includes your suit. For more information visit or to sign up visit https://www.stcatherines.co.uk/shop/st-catherines-santa-dash-new-location-for-2018/

FREE: Open House, Walmer Bridge, Saturday, December 8

The Friends of Mulanje Orphans charity is holding an Open House at 29 Liverpool Old Road, Walmer Bridge, near Preston, to help raise funds to buy food for the orphaned and vulnerable children at Christmas. The event runs from 10am until 4pm and will feature a bring and buy stall, raffle, gifts, perfumes, hand made clothing, with soup, cakes and refreshments also on offer. For more information call 01772 619409 or visit the Friends Of Mulanje Orphans Malawi website at www.fomo.co.uk

PAID: Christmas Family Crafts, Hoghton, Sunday, December 9


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A Christmas Carol is being presented in Southport

Christmas Family Crafts events are being held throughout December at Hoghton Tower and are perfect for all the family to enjoy. The sessions runs from 10am until 2pm (Dec 9 and 16) or 10am until 1pm (Dec 22 and 23). Crafts are a range of prices between 50p and £3 (cash only). The range of festive crafts are taking place in the comfort of Hoghton Tower’s beautiful wood-panelled Smoking Room. There is no need to book, just turn up. For more information visit http://www.hoghtontower.co.uk/

PAID: A Festive Christmas, Preston, Saturday, December 8

Preston Orpheus Choir are presenting their Christmas concert - A Festive Christmas - at St Michaels and All Angels Church on Egerton Road, Ashton in Preston. The concert will feature not only the popular choir, but also Freckleton Brass Band. The music starts at 7pm and tickets are £10, under 18s £5 - available on the door. But to avoid disappointment reserve your tickets by calling 01772 735197. To find out more about Preston Orpheus Choir visit www.prestonorpheuschoir.org, where you can also book.


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PAID: Gandini Juggling: Sigma, Lancaster, Saturday, December 8

Get yourself on the Festive Elf Trail at SEA LIFE Blackpool

Gandini Juggling’s beautiful new show explores the creative interface between juggling, geometry and classical Indian dance. Sigma showcases exuberant rhythms, patterns and colours, at the heart of which is a unique interpretation of the South Indian dance form, Bharatanatyam With a seductive percussion score and sumptuous backdrop of multimedia projections, Sigma is a finely crafted work. Presented at Nuffield Theatre, Lancaster at 8pm. To book call 01524 594151.

PAID: Santa Tram, Blackpool, Saturday, December 8


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Go and meet Santa in his grotto on board the Western Train in Blackpool. Santa’s special tram will be parked near Festival House and he will see as many children as possible between 10am and 12pm, and again from 1pm until 3.30pm. To celebrate his visit, Blackpool Heritage Tram Tours will be running a special service along the promenade. Tickets are £6 adults, or £3 children, which includes a sherry (or juice) and a mince pie on board, meeting Santa in his grotto with a gift for the children and unlimited rides on the trams along the promenade.

FREE: Crafty Vintage Christmas Markets, Lancaster, Saturday, December 8

Head to The Platform in Morecambe for Carols & Capers

Crafty Vintage Christmas Market at The Storey in Lancaster is the ultimate gift buying adventure for you and your friends. Crafty Vintage are known as purveyors of classic vintage, collectables, retro wares, quirky handmade, fine foods and delectable cuisine. Go along and meet the finest makers, creators and collectors in the land, bringing with them handmade festive gifts, vintage treasures and treats.Plus streetfood, live music and lots of merriment of course. From 11am until 4pm.


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FREE: Winter Goose Spectacle, Pilling, Sunday, December 9

Forget the Christmas Shopping and join Wyre Rangers to enjoy the spectacle of thousands of Pink Footed Geese flying out for the night time roost in Morecambe Bay. Dress for a slow walk with frequent stops, to watch the waders and wildfowl. This walk is graded as easy and it recommended you take binoculars and telescope (if you have one). The walk runs from 2.30pm until 3.30pm and admission is free. Meet at Pilling Lane Ends Amenity Area, Back Sands Lane, Pilling. Call 01995 602125 for more.

PAID: Medieval Yule, Preston, Sunday, December 9

Join the UK’s top medieval band Joglaresa for a Medieval Yule in Preston Minster on Church Street. They will be presenting a show entitled Heigh Ho The Holly. This concert is being supported by The High Sheriff of Lancashire and all proceeds are being donated to The Samaritans and Just Good Friends. The music starts at 7.30pm. Tickets are £20 and can be booked online at https://www.ticketsource.co.uk/whats-on/preston/preston-minster/joglaresa-for-a-medieval-yule


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PAID: Carols & Capers, Morecambe, Sunday, December 9

Blackpool Music Service's Christmas Festival is at the Empress Ballrooms in Blackpool

Queen of folk, singer Maddy Prior, joins up once again with the Carnival Band during the festive season for their unique celebratory show Carols & Capers. Together they mix renaissance, modern and ethnic instruments with a refreshing cavalier attitude and plenty of humour putting their inimitable stamps on a range of familiar and not-so-familiar festive fare. Catch Carols & Capers at The Platform in Morecambe on Sunday night from 7pm. Tickets are £22.50, available online at https://uk.patronbase.com/_ThePlatform/Productions/MAD/Performances

PAID: A Christmas Carol, Southport, Saturday, December 8


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Chapterhouse Theatre Company presents A Christmas Carol at The Atkinson in Southport on Saturday. There are two performances - one at 12.30pm and one at 7pm. Tickets are £16 for adults, £10 for children, with a family ticket (two adults, two children) available at £46. To book visit https://www.theatkinson.co.uk/ or call 01704 533 333.

PAID: Garstang Victorian Christmas Festival, Garstang, Monday, December 10 and Tuesday, December 11

People from all over the region join Garstang locals for festive fun on Monday and Tuesday nights. The town centre is closed to traffic with bands, singers, stilt walkers, and all kinds of street entertainment. Santa arrives in style and sets up shop in his grotto on the High Street. There are a vast array of stalls selling everything from hog roast, German sausages, candy floss and donuts. Many shops are open all evening so you can buy those last minute gifts. The festival starts at 6pm on both days. For more information visit https://www.facebook.com/events/2087819341449742/

PAID: Blackpool Music Service's Christmas Festival, Blackpool, Tuesday, December 11


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Blackpool Music Service’s Christmas Festival is back in the wonderful Empress Ballroom on Tuesday. Featuring talented Blackpool bands, ensembles and performers who have been particularly successful throughout 2018. With a massed choir of approximately 1,000 children this promises to be an evening to remember and a fabulous start the festive season. Starts 7pm. Tickets are £8 for adults, £4 for children.

PAID: Preston Vegan Market, Preston, Sunday, December 9

Preston’s fourth vegan market is taking place on Sunday from 11am until 5pm. The Christmas-themed 100 per cent vegan market at PPL on Cannon Street (off Fishergate) will feature 30 stalls showcasing local independent, vegan-friendly artisans, traders, makers and small businesses. Admission is £1 on the door (under 10s free).

Garstang Victoria Christmas Festival is the perfect way to get in the festive spirit