Festive treats at city venues

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This year Derby is set for a Christmas festive bonanza, with treats and events galore over the festive season.

Derby LIVE and Paul Holman Associates will be staging the dazzling all-star cast, family pantomime Cinderella at Derby Arena, as the Guildhall Theatre hosts family swashbuckling Christmas adventure Captain Sprout and the Christmas Pirates. Markeaton Park’s Craft Village will become a hub for a brand-new event, Family Festivities at Markeaton.

The Market Place will be transformed with the Cathedral Quarter 3aaa Christmas Ice Rink and Christmas Arts and Craft Fair. The Market Hall will become a magical Winter Wonderland. And the festive Derby Night Market will be taking place in the Cathedral Quarter.

Cinderella, Derby’s biggest ball and all-star cast pantomime will be staged at Derby Arena. TV star, West End actor and comedian Richard Blackwood (pictured) and star of the massively popular Mrs Brown’s Boys, Eilish O’Carroll along with Art Attack presenter Lloyd Warbey will guarantee a pantomime experience like no other.

A trip to the pantomime is sure to get families into the Christmas spirit. Stepping into Derby Arena transformed into a magical theatre space, with special pyrotechnics and effects is sure to amaze. Dazzling new sets and costumes, fabulous music and dance routines, hilarious comedy and audience participation, this is the rags to riches tale for whole family.

Cinderella is the classic fairy tale of a beautiful girl forced to serve her jealous stepsisters. Aided by the silly but loveable Buttons (Richard Blackwood) and a Fairy Godmother (Eilish O’Carroll) carefully watching over her, Cinderella dreams of escaping her misery and finding true love and happiness. Pantomime goers will join her journey to escape the misery of dastardly diva sisters and to find true love in the arms of a dashing Prince.

Cinderella will be on stage from Tuesday, December 6 until Tuesday, January 3, with tickets priced from £13.25.

Families can enjoy a cracking festive adventure at the Guildhall Theatre with Captain Sprout and the Christmas Pirates.

It’s the night before Christmas and Freddie and Mr Roo are settling down for bed, having set a trap to catch Father Christmas. Little do they know that they will be catching something very different and before long be on an adventure across the high seas to save Christmas for the people of Derby.

On a chilly Christmas Eve the naughty pirate Captain Sprout plots a stinking plan to steal Christmas for himself. Armed with his band of cut-throat pirates and a magic treasure map, that rotter Captain is scheming to rob the good children of Derby of their Christmas stockings whilst they sleep in their beds!

Only Captain Sprout didn’t plan for a plucky nine year old boy called Freddie! Armed with just his teddy - Mr Roo, and enough Christmas spirit to sink a galleon, Freddie dives feet first into an amazing adventure to stop Captain Sprout and save Christmas, but can he do it in time?

Larger-than-life characters, amazing adventures, and a sprinkling of beardy mermaid combine to tell a Christmas tale of trickery, magic, and naughty pirates.

Captain Sprout and the Christmas Pirates will be on stage at the Guildhall Theatre from December 8-28, tickets priced £11 – £13.

Family Festivities at Markeaton will be a fantastic brand-new Christmas experience for all. The Festive Express road train will transport visitors across the park and to the craft village. There will be traditional fairground rides for everyone to enjoy and Christmas characters to meet.

Seasonal food will be served in The Orangery café while there will be Christmas songs and a brass band in the craft village. For those who fancy making their own decorations there will be Wreath Making sessions. Across the days there will be plenty to do including festive face painting, make a Christmas bauble, personalise and create Christmas decorations. All of this and much more will be on offer in Markeaton Park Craft Village.

Events will be taking place each December weekend as well as three weekdays from December 21-23. Opening celebrations will take place on Saturday, December, 11am – 5pm. Featuring Christmas storytelling, singing around the Christmas Tree with local choir Sing for your Supper, a festive model boat display and the switching on of the Christmas Tree lights.

Derby’s Market Place plays host to the purpose-built Cathedral Quarter 3aaa Christmas Ice Rink this winter, made of real ice. Adults and children alike of all abilities can whizz around the rink in 50-minute sessions, running hourly, with skate hire included.

Whether out with a group of friends, spending time as a family or looking for an activity for a work Christmas party, a spin on the Cathedral Quarter 3aaa Ice Rink will be a fabulous festive treat. The Market Place also features other attractions including live music, and a Christmas food and gift fair.

Cathedral Quarter 3aaa Christmas Ice Rink at the Market Place will take place from December 1 until January 4, tickets to skate are priced from £6.50–£8.50.

From Friday, December 2, Derby’s Market Hall will be transformed by Furthest From The Sea into a magical traditional Christmas Winter Wonderland at The Market Hall, complete with Santa’s Grotto, Mrs Claus’ Post Office, Elfie Self-ie Trail, roaming pantomime, lunchtime musical concerts, interactive workshops and activities for all the family to enjoy.

Information and tickets are available from Derby LIVE on 01332 255800 or online at derbylive.co.uk they can also be purchase at the Sales and Information Centre, Assembly Rooms, Market Place, Derby, DE1 3AH.