Idlewells Shopping Centre

A Time for Giving at Idlewells

 WEB News lge

If you want to feel festive fast this year, you're advised to visit Idlewells Shopping Centre and soak up the atmosphere as you browse the stores for Christmas treats and bargains!

The decorations are getting better with every passing year, with the Idlewells team thrilled and inspired by the increasingly wonderful feedback received annually. Once again the malls will be lined with over 40 real Christmas trees - one outside every shop, the Grotto, (free to visit this year), is a giant Christmas tree looking over the central Café Moda and the colourful decorations twinkle to the sound of Christmas music and delighted visitors taking part in the impressive array of free activities running from the 25th of November.

As well as these free activities, Idlewells will be removing the summertime sand from the sandpit and replacing it with thousands of balls (3500 to be precise!) to become a 'Christmas Bauble Pit' for children to play in - AND there will be a few sweet treat giveaways over the holidays too!

The free Grotto will be open between 1pm - 4pm on each Saturday and Sunday from 25th November, and 21st, 22nd, 23rd, 24th December for Christmas weekend! Our Christmas Elf will greet you and ensure that as many children get to see Santa as possible each day! Santa will be giving a free gift, and photographer, Jason Parnell, will be on hand to take a photograph to buy - but only if you want one! 

Photographs will be priced, as last year, £5 for one copy or 3 for £10. If you wish to take your own pictures inside the Grotto, that's absolutely fine too!

Idlewells Christmas Calendar of FREE Events: 
11am - 3pm (or until supplies last!)

25th November:


• Make a stocking workshop
- make a cute little stocking to suit a small gift at this lovely sewing workshop, run by Tracy at Material Girl Fabric
• Three make a wreath workshops - learn to make a wreath! 8" oasis circles, greenery and holly are all provided in this great workshop for older children (10+ recommended) and adults run by Glenn of The Fruitarian, fruit and vegetable stall. Be at the tables for start times: 12 noon, 1pm and 2pm. Approximately 1 hour long. Gloves will be provided, but be warned, holly can hurt

Free chocolate advent calendar, to anyone showing us a £10 receipt from any Idlewells shop, bearing the same day's date! Choose between: Dairy Milk, Malteser, Galaxy, Mars, Peppa Pig, Transformers (while stocks last). Important: Only one calendar per family. 


2nd December:


Elf Yourself workshop - Elf yourself, then make a tree decoration, enjoy a treat and receive a certificate!! A wonderful workshop to get your little ones in the Christmas zone!!!


9th December:


Amazing ICE SCULPTURE, watch it created in the morning - then come along when its finished and sit inside for a photograph or selfie!


16th December:


• Santa's Toy Factory! Find out what its like to be a real elf in Santa's workshop! Make a quality toy to take home! There will be a choice of toys with shapes ready to assemble and decorate, including: 3D houses, castles, aeroplanes and space rockets plus... puppets of dolls and teddy bears!


23rd December: 

Make Takelego1

Free LEGO Christmas miniatures - A genuine Lego ‘make and take’ workshop!!! A lego 'professional' will be on hand to show you how to make your favourite Christmas character, and then you have a Christmas decoration to last a lifetime!

Donations Welcome:
There will be a donation bucket out at each event for members of the Idlewells community made homeless on 5th November due to arsen attack. Of course it is totally at your descretion whether or not you choose to donate, or how much, but we know any amount will be gratefully received by the family concerned.

Terms & Conditions:

Workshop safety - All activites are free to join in, and for any age, young or old! All we ask is that children under 8 are supervised by a parent or carer, and that care is taken whilst taking part in some of the workshops!  The wreath workshop is more suited to older children and adults, but younger children can help parents under close supervision. 

Advent Calendar giveaway - To claim your free advent calendar, bring a receipt (dated 25th November 2017) for £10 or over, from any Idlewells shop, to the collection point near to the Grotto. Only ONE calendar will be permitted, per family on this occasion.  

Free Grotto - This year the grotto is completely free, so we are expecting extra numbers of visitors each day. We are restricting children to one visit per day, and possibly one visit per weekend when it is particularly busy. 'Santa's little helper' will try to ensure the queue keeps flowing, but please do bear with us as we establish a fair system over the early days. If you have already visited, please do respect other families wishing to take their children to see Santa for the first time. The Grotto will open at 1pm and close at 4pm sharp. We will try to pre-warn you as 4pm approaches, if it looks like you may not get in, our Elf will always do her best to ensure everyone gets to see Santa.  Sunday is recommended as a good day to plan your visit, although it's worth reminding you that not all shops in the Centre are open on Sundays. The central café is open 7 days - and car parking is free.

Bauble Pit - Please do not allow your children to: eat or drink, run and jump into, throw balls, take balls home - or wear shoes in the Bauble Pit. If your child is not toilet trained, please do make sure he/she is wearing a nappy to avoid little accidents! Please ensure your children respect others using the facility and shoppers passing by. Children should be supervised at all times, and their safety is ultimately the responsibility of the parent or carer with them.

Thank you for your co-operation. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us here.