Lighting up the country’s tallest Christmas tree at Wakehurst Place on December 1
Get into the festive spirit as the lights are illuminated on England’s largest Christmas tree – a towering 118ft (36 metre) giant redwood at Wakehurst Place, near Haywards Heath, West Sussex.
Switching on the lights
The tree will be lit up at 4.30pm on Sunday December 1 at a special ceremony at Wakehurst Place, the country estate of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
As part of the countdown to the switch-on, from 4pm a choir will be singing near the tree, there will be children’s activities and an opportunity to enjoy festive food and drink. Christmas trees will be on sale, and the Visitor Centre will be open for relaxed Christmas shopping, with a wide range of gift ideas.
The giant Christmas tree is decorated each year with low energy Christmas lights by a team of expert tree climbers from Wakehurst’s conservation and woodland team, using ropes, specialist climbing gear and two high level platforms.
Once lit up it can be seen for miles around and is the centrepiece of Christmas festivities on the 500 acre Wakehurst estate. Following the switch-on ceremony the tree will be lit daily from 3.30pm until January 5.
Visitors can take a break from the hustle and bustle of festive preparations to enjoy a winter walk in Wakehurst’s renowned gardens and see Santa in the estate’s sixteenth century mansion on Sundays, December 8, 15 and 22. A visit to Santa will cost £5, to include a gift.
Wakehurst is open every day throughout the festive season, except Christmas Eve and Christmas Day and there is plenty to see and enjoy around the gardens and woodlands in winter - from glorious views to seasonal blooms and scents. Highlights include the Winter Garden, with striking foliage, shrubs and flowers, including dogwoods, witch hazels and rhododendrons.
The Visitor Centre is open daily (except Christmas Eve and Christmas Day) for Christmas shopping with extended opening hours on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays in December in the run up to Christmas. Christmas trees will be on sale from November 29.
Normal admission prices apply.
For more information see the visit Wakehurst section on the Kew website, or call 01444 894067.
For more information about Christmas tree sales and Christmas shopping at the Visitor Centre call 01444 894073.
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