Shining a light on festive favourites at the Arboretum

Mon, 03/12/2018 - 10:12

Shining a light at the NMA

The Arboretum will be offering a range of returning favourites this Christmas season and is excited to launch a brand new event for 2018, the Illuminated Arboretum which will take place each evening from 12-21 December.   This stunning immersive experience will see the Arboretum ‘shown in another light’ with beautiful lighting washing the memorials with colour and creating a series of artistic vistas and interactive displays.


Visitors will be able to journey down the torch-lit avenue, experiment with the shadow wall and try creating Morse Code with colourful LEDS, before embarking on a journey through Votive Woods where they can make their own contribution to the display. Entries at 6pm, 6.30pm, 7pm, 7.30pm & 8pm. Tickets can be purchased online ( or by calling 01283 245 100. 


Coupled with the Illuminated Arboretum, visitors can enjoy a sparkling programme of festive events and activities; food and gift fair, Christmas crafts and candlelit carol service which are among the special events planned for visitors to the National Memorial Arboretum in the run-up to Christmas.


The Arboretum’s annual programme of festive events will kick off on December 1 and 2, 9.00 – 17.00hrs with these free events and activities:


Festive fair with handmade gifts and a selection of food and drink. Free to enter


‘Rocking Robin’ Children’s craft workshop – Little ones can create handcrafted festive robins for the mantlepiece – completely free to take part!


The Arboretum’s annual Carols by Candlelight evening in Heroes Square will take place on Saturday 22 December at 6pm. Carol books and candles will be available to purchase on the evening.


A festive memory tree adorned with hand-written messages to loved ones will also be on display in the Arboretum’s award-winning Remembrance centre. For a small donation, visitors can add their own individual ‘bauble’ which will stay in place over the Christmas period. It is a perfect way to remember loved ones at this special time of year.

The restaurant is offering a range of delicious Christmas fare during December, complete with all the trimmings.  A two course Christmas lunch followed with tea or coffee and mince pies is also on offer for pre-bookings daily. Booking Essential. Please call 01283 245 100 to book. Adults £17.50, Children £9.95.


During the Arboretum’s twelve days of Christmas talks, starting on Boxing Day until 5 January inclusive, visitors can enjoy a FREE 15-minute talk on the memorial of the day. A 10.30am and 14.30pm slot are available on each day. On Christmas Day the memorial story will feature on the charity’s Facebook page.


Sarah Oakden, Head of Marketing at the National Memorial Arboretum, said: “We always welcome lots of extra visitors in December when many families and friends get the chance to spend more time together.  We hope that our varied programme of activities and events will provide inspiration for children and adults alike.

“New for this year, our Illuminated Arboretum will allow visitors to interact with our memorials and the Arboretum’s woodland landscape in new and unique ways. We’re delighted with its beautiful and dramatic effect and have already sold thousands of tickets - so recommend that visitors book soon so they don’t miss it.” 

Philip Atkins, Leader of Staffordshire County Council said: "We’re incredibly proud to have the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire and the festive season is a special time to explore, discover and remember loved ones.


“Whether it’s the carols by candlelight service, festive food and gift fair or the stunning illuminated show there’s something for all the family. It truly is a world-class centre of remembrance and a wonderfully moving place. I would definitely encourage people to try and visit over the festive season.”

For more details on these and all other events at the Arboretum, log on to