What is Christmas Day in the United Kingdom All About?
Christmas Day is the peak of a festive period that lasts for at least two days. It depends on the calendar, which becomes a holiday period that stretches for a few days. It can also last up to 9 days, and it is one that people have been preparing for over a few months.
The origin of a traditional Christmas Celebration is now distinct from an earlier pagan winter holiday, which dates back to 6th century England. In the middle ages, it was an important holiday that was well-established. There is traditional pageantry, music, customs, and feastings. The customs from the pre-Christian days were mixed into the Celebrations, and a lot of them remain.
In 1647, a law was passed by the parliament, and it made Christmas illegal. They banned all festivities and the Puritan leader Oliver Cromwell, who thought of feasting and revelry about what was supposedly a holy day as immoral. They lifted the ban when Cromwell was no longer in power in 1660.
The Holy Days and Fasting Days Act of 1551 in Britain says that all citizens should attend a Christian church service on this day, and they are not allowed to use any vehicle to read the service. Every year, a lot of people break this law. The law could have been made to encourage humility to force even the rich to attend church by foot, or maybe it was to avoid traffic and parking crush that universal attendance could have been brought.
When the reign of Queen Victoria started, Christmas became a time for gift giving and a special season for everyone, especially children.
How to Celebrate Christmas Day in the United Kingdom and Things to Do
- Watch the Queen’s Speech – Every Christmas, families in the United Kingdom watch the Queen’s Christmas address, which is also known as the Queen’s speech. The very first Christmas address had 251 words, but the average of Queen Elizabeth II is 656 words. It is watched very often in the UK, and it is widely watched in the UK on Christmas Day.
- Decorate a Christmas Tree – The Christmas tradition is a tradition that goes a long way back in time, and it might have originated during the pagan rites so they can celebrate nature’s survival in winter. The tradition started in Germany, from where it spreads in the Christian world, and specifically in Protestant countries, during the 18th and mostly in the 19th The tradition had reached the UK in the 19th century, which Prince Albert promoted, and then it spread so fast that the Christmas tree became a classic Christmas symbol. You can buy and put decorations on your Christmas tree so you can feel the tradition even more.
- Try Christmas crackers – They are usually pulled at the beginning of a meal, and those paper hats inside should be worn during the entire meal. There is a “banger” in each cracker that pops loudly when you pull the cracker. Inside are a joke and a small prize.
How Christmas Day in the United Kingdom is Celebrated
Based on tradition, Christmas in England is a time for family. A lot of people wake up early because at night Santa Claus (Father Christmas) left gifts for the children. In their tradition, Father Christmas passes through the chimney to enter the house and leaves small gifts in the big stockings that Children hang up during Christmas Eve.
Those who respect the rituals during Christmas do church service after breakfast and then go back home to eat Christmas lunch or Christmas dinner. The most important elements of Christmas are Christmas pudding and Stuffed Turkey.
The Christmas gifts will be unwrapped either in the morning or after lunch. In the 19th century, the formerly opened until the next day, December 26, called Boxing Day. It was the day when boxes were opened.
Today, many of the important traditions are still very alive, like Christmas stockings, gifts, pudding, and turkey. The church services attract fewer people, and there are new traditions like watching movies with their family, spending it with friends, or driving or walking in the country or park.
Venues and Special Events for Celebrating Christmas Day in the United Kingdom
- The Sky Gardens at Moet & Chandon’s Winter Bar – If you want to experience an excellent Christmas event, you should go to Sky Garden. You will have the best views of the skyline, some fizz, and festive feels. Besides, they also bake camembert and fairy lights.
- Winterland – With the festive cabins, snow-covered trees, and igloos, Winterland is one of Christmas Day’s best events. You can go to Fulman and attend one of their events. It ranges from an alpine-themed bottomless brunch to gin tasting.
- Winter Beer Hall – One of the popular Christmas events in Camden’s Electric Ballroom. It is a socially distant antic in the UK. You can go to this live entertainment and drink really good beer. This is a new event this year that never happened in the UK before.
You can spend Christmas in the UK, and experience what it has to offer. Since it is very rich in Christmas tradition, you will surely find an event near you. Take advantage of this season in the UK, and other public holidays so you can have a lot of fun.