festive things to do in london

things we have done the past few years at xmas that are lovely to do;  one xmas eve Robert and I went to the charles dickens museum –  its a fun insight into the writer’s life, especially if you are interested by the writer.   there are portraits of the family, the writing desk that dickens used to create his famous novels,  his personal book collection –  and even personal artefacts such as jewellery.  there are characters from the book that keep you entertained as you walk around the house, making it more fun and engaging for children.  after reading his biography by Claire Tomalin my interest in dickens was born – not only does it tell the story of the author, but it vividly describes a london of that era.    not only is it a great educational eye opener, but an opportunity to see the inside of these wonderful london historic houses.

usually on xmas morning, whilst Robert is cooking, the kids and I  usually take a walk to the top of Primrose Hill – unless its absolutely pouring with rain, its always good to get that winter’s fresh air and the view from the top of the hill is always a stunning picture of London. we must make use of the wonderful parks that London has – they are our treasures.  this year will be very different for us, as we are in the midst of moving Xmas week – bad timing, but I am guessing that we will be taking a walk on the beaches of Suffolk. 

on Boxing Day, I  last went to see Little Women with a girlfriend –  its a good time to go and see a film, and although you can practically catch up on anything on digital now, how lovely to be in a proper cinema with silence and the big screen.  we just recently saw West Side story, which I think is fun, colourful, and a great remake of the classic.  also Boxing Day is not usually   a busy day …..  I know that there is another worry with the new variant, but we went last saturday evening and it was quite spaced out and not at all busy.  All these places are really trying to make it safe. 

i know i tell you every year, but its always a lovely xmas treat and could be an idea for a gift, but for a great insight into 17C london life, you must visit the  fascinating  dennis severs house in spitalfields.  they have a special ‘spirit for the christmas’ season for this time of year, but check their website to see whether it is on this year – and if not, buy a present for someone for next year……

the 17C silkweavers house ,which has been lovingly restored as a working house – is an insight into life of that period and it certainly keeps your mind wondering.  since Severs has passed away the house has been beautifully maintained  and continues to show in all its glory what life would have been like. – the grandeur of the wealthy, the darkness of the poor.  its a museum, cum drama, cum personal collection – its just breathtaking – your eyes dart from corner to corner of each of the rooms on the 5 floors – absorbing the different scenarios, the different smells, the crackling of the open fires , the flickering of the candles- it really is a must visit.  why not buy a visit for a friend – they would just love it.    think of art crossed with drama.

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