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Village Food & Drink

Roll on Christmas!

Posted on November 27 2014 at 2:31:33 0 comments

Snowy scene

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Your guide to some of the best ways to celebrate the festive season in the Village area.

We say this every year, but it seems like no time since we were putting together last year’s festive issue.

Of course, this time, you lucky readers have two separate December and January editions to enjoy, which means we were able to make our first-ever stand-alone December magazine more Christmassy than ever!

As regular readers will know, two thirds of the Village staff are mad about Christmas, so we love hearing of all the festive events going on around our villages.

It’s the tree-lighting ceremonies that really make you feel that the season has begun, and this year Barnt Green is pulling out all the stops to make the event special.

Taking place on Friday November 28, the fun begins at 5pm with carols around the tree in Millennium Park, with Santa himself in attendance to flip the switch.

He’ll then lead villagers on a procession to St Andrew’s First School, guided by glowing lanterns made by the pupils, and take up residence in his grotto for the school’s Christmas Fair.

Santa will be a busy boy as December begins, as he’s also booked in to help Blackwell and Lickey get their festivities underway.

On Friday December 5 at 6pm, he will switch on the lights at The Wheel, St Catherine’s Church, Blackwell, and then he’ll be at the Trinity Centre, Lickey from 4pm the following day, accompanied by carols from Lickey school pupils.

Somehow, the big man will still find time to meet children in his grotto at Little Heath Garden Centre, which is open every weekend from Saturday December 6, free of charge (but please make a donation to one of the centre’s chosen charities).

As we went to press, there still wasn’t a date for the Alvechurch tree switch-on, but the lamppost lights should be sparkling away by the time you read this!

With all these exciting events to attend, you might not have got around to buying or writing your Christmas cards yet – so why not buy some with a local theme and support a good cause at the same time?

Alvechurch Baptist Church has commissioned packs of Christmas cards to be sold in aid of their Sanctuary Refurbishment Fund, featuring wintry images like the ones shown here.

Cellophane-wrapped packs of six (with envelopes) cost just £2.99, or buy ten packs for £25. To buy, you can either drop in to the church’s regular Friday coffee morning or a Sunday service, where the cards are on sale, or alternatively, see any church member.

Thinking about Christmas cards automatically leads on to Christmas presents, and there are plenty of opportunities to buy special gifts around the Village area.

Tony’s Handyman in Barnt Green offers a vast array of lovely things for the home and kitchen, with quirky designs to please every member of the family – and the shop also has essentials such as logs, coal, rocksalt, sledges and shovels (for the white Christmas we just KNOW we’re going to get!)

Beautiful gifts are also available from Coconut Pink, the handmade jewellery range, with vintage and contemporary beads and charms combining to create unique pieces for all occasions. The affordable prices make them great for stocking fillers, or for children to buy for Mum.

Festive scene

Gift vouchers also make fantastic gifts, especially for those who like to choose their own presents. Bliss Hair Therapy in Alvechurch offers this option, as well as lots of other beauty gift ideas.

You can also book in to get yourself looking glam for the party season, with party hair-ups, GHD curls, make up and a visit to the lash and brow bar.

Mobile beauty business Beauticle can also give you a makeover, from sparkly long-lasting nails to a natural-looking spray tan – so you can have the confidence to bare those legs and toes even in the depths of winter!

Meanwhile, My Beauty can make your eyes look stunning with beautiful individual lash extensions. The semi-permanent lashes still allow you shower, swim and cry, with no need to wear mascara.

If you are hosting a party this year, make sure your home looks the business with a fabulous centrepiece real Christmas tree covered in shimmering decorations.

Hopwood Garden Centre offers Nordmann non-drop trees, which can all be netted for easy transport, and of course there’s also a range of other seasonal plants and garden gifts.

British Grown Premium Quality trees are also available from Cofton Church Lane, starting at 4 feet tall – there’s free local delivery, and every child accompanying an adult to buy a tree will receive a free Christmas decoration.

At Little Heath Garden Centre, you’ll find a great range of real trees as well as everything you need to decorate them – plus lots of gifts and homeware to make the house feel truly festive.

Traditional food and drink is all part of what makes Christmas special, but sometimes it’s nice to have something a little different, and the seasonal ice creams and sorbets (including gingerbread and mulled wine flavours) from Churchfields Farm in Droitwich will add a great twist to Yuletide meals.

From 3–6pm on Friday December 19 and 10–4pm on Saturday December 20, you can pop to the farm and see how the ice cream is made.

Christmas food and drink is also a lot of work, of course, especially if you’re entertaining a crowd – so take a break and head for The Crown inn at Withybed Green, a friendly canalside pub with food served daily (except Christmas Day and New Year’s Day).

There’s a New Year’s Eve party, and on New Year’s Day there’s the annual and much-loved Morris Dancing display.

We hope all our readers and customers have a wonderful Christmas!


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