Windsor Castle has a Victorian theme this Christmas

Release date: 
Wednesday, 29 October 2008

Celebrate the festive season in style with a visit to Windsor Castle.  This year there is a Victorian theme to the special Christmas displays and activities.

From 8 December, the Castle’s Christmas tree from Windsor Great Park will go on display in St George’s Hall.  Windsor is closely associated with the tradition of the Christmas tree, and Prince Albert, consort of Queen Victoria, is credited with popularising tree decorations. The baubles and crowns that adorn the Castle’s tree today are exclusive to the Royal Collection and can be purchased from the on-site shops, along with a range of luxury seasonal foods.

From 9 December until 6 January, Queen Victoria’s winter sleigh will be on public display for the first time at Windsor.  Painted in dark red and gold and lined with red velvet, it was built by carriage-makers Hooper & Co.  Queen Victoria and Prince Albert spent many Christmases at Windsor, and the queen often enjoyed sleigh rides through the park.  Prince Albert drove the sleigh, which was pulled by a pair of horses with harnesses decorated with ostrich plumes and silver bells.

Families visiting on 20 and 21 December can learn how Queen Victoria and Prince Albert celebrated Christmas at Windsor.  A special activity trail will reveal royal feasts and festive games, and the Victorian customs and traditions we maintain today.  Children can then make their own traditional Victorian Christmas cards and decorations to take home.

For those looking for a very special experience this December, new exclusive evening tours of Windsor Castle offer a unique opportunity to go ‘behind the ropes’ once the Castle has closed its doors to the public. Introduced for the first time this year, the tour takes visitors through the sumptuous State Apartments in the company of an expert guide and ends with a glass of mulled wine.  It is available on 9, 10, 17 & 18 December, price £50.00.  For further information or to make a booking, please telephone +44 (0)20 7766 7333 or visit www.royalcollection.org.uk

Windsor Castle is open daily, except 12, 25 and 26 December.  Visitor information is available from www.royalcollection.org.uk Buy your tickets at the Castle, from www.royalcollection.org.uk or 020 7766 7304 and enjoy twelve months of admission.

For images and further information, please contact Rachel Woollen, +44 (0)20 7024 5607, rachel.woollen@royalcollection.org.uk.