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9 Christmas Markets to visit in the UK in 2023

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A Christmas market in Bath, UK
UK Christmas market are also an opportunity to discover new destinations this winter.

It is Christmas market season in the UK.

From late November through December, towns and cities across the UK are coming alive with festivities and a variety of local markets offering handcrafted gifts from local artisans showcasing their talents to international vendors offering goods from around the world.

Beyond the shopping experience in the market stalls, twinkling lights, live entertainment, and mulled wine, UK Christmas market are also an opportunity to discover new destinations this winter.

Euronewsweek has selected nine of the country’s best Christmas markets, ideal for a family day trip or a romantic night out.

Here are our Christmas Markets to visit in the UK in 2023.

Birmingham Christmas Market 2023

A firm favourite on the city’s Yuletide calendar, Birmingham Frankfurt Christmas Market  is the largest German Christmas market outside of Germany or Austria. Expect a fine range of traditional gifts and products on its 180 stalls and get into the  festive spirit while indulging in schnitzels, bratwursts, crepes, glühwein and weissbeer. Another huge draw is its bandstand location in Victoria Square and the programme of live music and carol singers that bring party vibes to your festive shopping. 

When? 3 November to 23 December 2023 

While you’re here
Check out outdoor skating at Ice Rink Birmingham, the Big Wheel Experience, or head to Wightwick in Wolverhampton to experience a traditional Victorian Christmas. 

Hyde Park Winter Wonderland 2023

Hyde Park, London

Transforming London’s most famous park, Winter Wonderland is the biggest Christmas attraction in the capital. Home to the world’s tallest transportable Ferris wheel and the UK’s largest open air ice rink, thrilling fairground rides and numerous bars and food stalls, you’ll need at least a day to enjoy all the attractions here. Don’t miss jaw-dropping circus acts at Cirque Berserk and creative ice sculpting workshops, and browse over 100 wooden chalets for unique gifts, festive decorations and culinary delights.

When? November 2023 to January 2024

While you’re here
Wander further afield and take photos of the festive window displays at Hamleys, Selfridge’s and Harrods, and the capital’s festive lights along Regent Street and Oxford Street.

Southbank Winter Festival 2023

Southbank Centre, London

The popular Winter Festival returns to London’s Southbank Centre this autumn, a festive favourite that sits alongside an eclectic programme of festive shows and events along the banks of the River Thames. All along the South Bank you’ll find twinkling wooden cabins selling Christmas gifts, from the quirky to the traditional. Make sure you get a selfie by the towering Christmas tree before you leave.

When? 28 October 2023 to 7 January 2024

While you’re here
Enjoy a live classical music concert Christmas in Tinseltown, featuring tunes from your favourite Christmas films played by the London Philharmonic Orchestra and presented by film reviewer Mark Kermode on 14 December.  

Winchester Christmas Market 2023

Winchester Cathedral

With its unique location on the grounds of a celebrated English icon, Winchester Cathedral’s Christmas Market is widely regarded as one of Europe’s best. More than 100 chalets are home to hand-picked exhibitors offering exclusive gifts that visitors won’t find on the high street – from hand-crafted decorations and festive treats to craft beer and mulled wine.

When? 17 November to – 21 December 2023

While you’re here
Head inside the 1.000 year-old Cathedral to hear a range of seasonal services taking place, from Advent evensongs to carol services, featuring the acclaimed choir. 

York Christmas Market 2023

Parliament Street, York

Soak up medieval charm at York’s award-winning Christmas fair. Alpine-style chalets take pride of place on Parliament Street, offering an array of festive decorations, foodie treats and traditional Christmas gifts. For local Yorkshire produce, head for the Make in Yorkshire Yuletide Village, and for all the fun of the fair, slide down the Victorian-style helter-skelter at Kings Square. After all that excitement, you’ll need a tipple or two, so stop by the rustic barn in St Sampson’s Square for a glass of mulled wine and a cup of hot roasted chestnuts.

When? 18 November to 23 December 2023

While you’re here

Lace up your walking boots for a 90-minute daily Festive Guided Walking Tour, which explores the history, tales and traditions of 2,000 years of festive tradition including Winter Solstice, Saturnalia, Yule and of course, our modern idea of Christmas.

Rochester Christmas Market 2023

Rochester, Kent

This Medway market attracts more than 130,000 visitors a year. Found in Rochester’s Castle Gardens, browse a range of chalet-style stalls selling everything from Fairtrade clothing to dog toys and homemade jams. Head over to the Bavarian food village for a bratwurst before letting loose on some good old-fashioned fairground rides. The market also coincides with the Dickensian Christmas Festival (2 to 3 December 2023), where you can immerse yourself in Victoriana, meet costumed characters and listen to open-air carolling.

When? 25 November to 10 December 2023

While you’re here
Grab your 19th-century ball gown and attend the Mistletoe Ball, part of the Dickensian Christmas Festival. 

Bath Christmas Market 2023

Bath Christmas Market sees more than 160 pop-up chalets set up on pretty Georgian streets and around its prized Abbey. Browse stalls selling food, decorations, homeware, jewellery and everything in between from local artisans and craftsmen in the South West and further afield. With new stalls to explore alongside the perennial favourites, you can indulge in a cup of mulled wine and a warm festive snack to keep those winter chills at bay.

When? 23 November to 10 December 2023

While you’re here
Check out Bath on Ice, which along with its ice rink, is home to Glow Golf, a mini golf course decked out with fairy lights. Glow-in-the-dark golf balls will also help you get a hole-in-one after dark.

Norwich Christmas Markets 2023

Norwich doesn’t have just one Christmas market; it has several! With festive events taking place from November, there are plenty of reasons to visit up until the big day itself. The largest, Festive Fair at The Forum, spills onto the pedestrianised amphitheatre opposite Norwich’s biggest medieval church. Browse stalls selling handmade East Anglian crafts, art, food and drink to the soundtrack of live Christmas music, and don’t miss the delicious street food.

When? 23 to 26 November 2023

While you’re here
Stop for a cup of warming Gluhwein at Sir Toby’s Beers on Norwich Market (Norwich’s smallest bar), The Nutcracker-themed afternoon tea at The Assembly House and the magical illuminations on Norwich Castle.

Stratford-upon-Avon Victorian Christmas Market 2023

Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire

Step back in time at this award-winning Victorian Christmas Market spreading traditional festive cheer with shopping, street food and free entertainment. Around 300 stalls, complete with Victorian outfit-clad vendors, will be selling a wide range of gifts and seasonal products, and over on Wood Street, there’ll be a traditional funfair to keep the little ones entertained, including an original Victorian-era carousel.

When? 7 to 10 December 2023

While you’re here
Experience traditional winter blooms and ‘Wassailing’ (traditional folk singing) at Christmas at Shakespeare’s birthplace.

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Cannes opens with French comedy and honorary award for Meryl Streep

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Actress Juliette Binoche hands an award to Meryl Steep
Meryl Streep receives a honorary Palme D’Or from Juliette Binoche | Photo: Andrea Rentz

The 77th edition of the Cannes Film Festival officially opened last night with Quentin Dupieux’s Le Deuxième Acte (The Second Act), and an honorary Palme d’Or awarded to American actress Meryl Streep.

Presented Out of Competition as a world premiere on the Croisette last night, May 14, this four-part comedy was also released in all French cinemas on the same day. The film stars Lea Seydoux, Vincent Lindon, Louis Garrel and Raphaël Quenard playing squabbling actors filming a movie produced and directed by artificial intelligence.

The opening ceremony of the 77th Festival de Cannes, hosted at the  Grand Théâtre Lumière, also had American actress Meryl Streep as a guest of honour.

Streep received the Festival’s Honorary Palme d’or, 35 years after winning the Best Actress award for Evil Angels, her only appearance in Cannes until last night.

“My mother, who is usually right about everything, said to me: ’Meryl, my darling, you’ll see. It all goes so fast. So fast,″ added Streep. “And it has, and it does. Except for my speech, which is too long,” said the three time Oscar award-winning actress.

Last year French Film director Justine Triet won the Cannes Film Festival Palme d’Or for her murder mystery film “Anatomy of a Fall” becoming the third female filmmaker ever to win the prize, which was first awarded in 1955. 

The 77th Cannes Film Festival is set to run until May 25th, when the Palme d’Or winners will be revealed, 2024.

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Exhibition in Madrid reveals science and technology behind Pixar’s films

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Exhibition in Madrid reveals science and technology behind Pixar’s films
The Science Behind Pixar can be seen at CaixaForum Madrid until 8 September.

CaixaForum Madrid is currently hosting The Science Behind Pixar exhibition, created by the Museum of Science, Boston, in collaboration with Pixar Animation Studios. The exhibition is divided into eight sections, corresponding to the steps in the process Pixar uses to transform an idea into a film. With specific examples from some of their most famous films, the public will be able to experiment with the techniques behind the modelling, rigging, surfaces, sets and cameras, animation, simulation, lighting and rendering of animated films.

This is the third collaboration between the ”la Caixa” Foundation and Pixar Studios. In 2015, Pixar: 25 Years of Animation, represented a thorough review of this pioneering company’s work in computer animation in its 25 years of history. Subsequently, Pixar, Building Characters (which has travelled to five CaixaForums since 2020) focused on the visual design of the Pixar characters to best transmit the story and fit in with the other elements of the film. Now, the eight sections of The Science Behind Pixar will give visitors an insight into every stage of the technical process used by Pixar’s artists and computer scientists

The aim of the new exhibition is to peel away, layer by layer and in a way that is attractive for all audiences, the scientific, computer and mathematical concepts that lie behind our favourite Pixar characters. To do this, the exhibition is organised into eight sections, each of which explains in depth one specific step of Pixar’s technical process: Modelling, which allows characters to be created in 3D; Rigging, in which the virtual bones, muscles and joints are developed; design of Surfaces and Sets; Animation, which brings the story to life; Simulation, which provides automated movements; Lighting, which enhances the emotional impact, and Rendering, which turns 3D scenes into 2D images.

Throughout 815 square metres in CaixaForum Madrid, visitors will learn about all these steps that Pixar pays passionate attention to in order to bring its worlds and characters to life. Dozens of interactive and audiovisual elements will reveal what is hidden behind Pixar films, from the first-ever computer-animated feature film – Toy Story – which opened over two decades ago, to the release of Turning Red.

To better understand the science and maths that go into creating the worlds and characters of Pixar’s films, visitors will see audiovisuals and hear first-hand from members of the studios’ production teams. They will also be invited to experience different roles within the production pipeline, through screen-based activities and physical interactive elements.

In the Sets & Cameras section, for example, visitors will discover how camera placement and angles created a bug’s-eye view for A Bug’s Life; in Modelling, they will try their hand at creating a digital sculpture from an artist’s sketch and in Lighting they will use lights to solve challenges similar to ones Pixar faced in creating underwater scenes with virtual light in Finding Nemo. The exhibition route also includes human-size recreations of many Pixar film characters, such as Buzz Lightyear (Toy Story), Dory (Finding Nemo), Mike and Sulley (Monsters, Inc.), Edna Mode (The Incredibles) and WALL·E (from the film of the same name).

Throughout the months that the exhibition will remain at CaixaForum Madrid, the ”la Caixa” Foundation will be offering various activities to bring the art and science of Pixar closer to all audiences. In addition, the general public can take a guided tour and families can choose between the family tour and the animated stories workshop-tour, where visitors can make a short, animated clip to understand all the phases of the creative process after visiting the exhibition.

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Switzerland wins Eurovision song contest with non-binary singer

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Non-binary singer Nemo, winner of the Eurovision 2024
Singer Nemo performed ‘The Code’ for Switzerland | Photo: Alma Bengtsson

After the very last set of scores had come in, The Code, performed by rapper Neno, was announced as the clear champion of the Eurovision Song Contest 2024 with a points tally of 591 and a lead of 44 points. 

Croatia finished in second place with Rim Tim Tagi Dim by Baby Lasagna on 547 points. The other spot on the podium finish went to Ukraine, ending up in third place thanks to alyona alyona & Jerry Heil with their song Teresa & Maria, on 453 points.

Scores on the night were awarded in two stages, as is traditional at the Eurovision Song Contest. The first results to come in were from the juries, followed by the reveal of the public vote.

Once the initial points from 37 juries had come in, Switzerland already had secured the lead on the scoreboard with 365 points.

Nemo is the first nonbinary artist to win Eurovision.

“I’m mostly just really grateful for this experience and all the friends I’ve made along the way. This was one of the most queer representations we’ve seen at Eurovision which was amazing, I want to shout out all the other queer artists this year,” said the artist who was born in Biel, a small bilingual town in Switzerland.

Nemo’s triumph in Malmö is Switzerland’s third win at the Eurovision Song Contest to date, following victory by Lys Assia in 1956 and Céline Dion in 1988.

Switzerland first participated in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1956, winning the very first edition of the competition, which it also hosted. 

It has been a controversial year for the song contest festival launched in 1956. For weeks, the question of whether Israel should be allowed to compete or not while engaged in a military conflict in Gaza dominated the media surrounding the event and attracted pro-Palestine activists to the Swedish city of Malmö. Eden Golan, a 20-year old singer representing Israel, was booed during a dress rehearsal; It has been reported that she was confined to her hotel room, while in Malmo to perform at Eurovision, after a series of threats against the Israeli delegation. Hours before the grand final, on May 11th, Dutch rapper Joost Klein, who represented the Netherlands, was disqualified from Eurovision 2024 over what the organisers described as an “incident” involving a female member of the production crew.

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