It’s been a while in construction but the Festival of Lights at Longleat is ready and it’s looking like it’s bigger and better than in previous years.
Having been assistants at the Caravan and Motorhome Club Site next door we’ve watched the dedicated team go backwards and forwards daily into Longleat as they build the iconic lanterns for the festival.
With the entrance to Longleat only fifty yards out of the club site exit, it’s the perfect place to stay if you plan on visiting this event.
On a recent visit into Longleat we got a sneaky peak at some of the lanterns as the spectacle started to take shape. Impressive by day but obviously, going to be more impressive by night, all lit up.
With a special annual pass preview on the 8th November and open to the general public on the 9th November, this is looking to be one of their more spectacular displays.
This year’s festival is said to include more than 3000 lanterns, 30,000 metres of silk and 50,000 LED lights.
The theme changes every year, this year it’s Myths and Legends. George and the Dragon, Cyclops, Kraken, Zeus and Hydra and even the troll under the bridge are amongst the spectacle.
It really is a spectacle worth attending. Pretty lights, music, an animated Christmas tree that makes it snow, unicorns and rainbows. For the annual pass preview, the gates opened at 3pm and the event went on until just after 7.30pm. At 5pm everyone gathered in front of the house were Ceawlin and Lady Emma welcomed everyone and then did the big countdown to switching on the lights. This year, throughout the evening, for the first time they are projecting onto the front of the house.
The lights are on and the masses throng towards the gardens where fairies and leprechauns play.
The Festival of Lights is completely accessible for prams and wheelchairs. Make sure you wear comfy shoes and wrap up warm. The temperature soon drops as darkness arrives. There is an assortment of food and drink available along with other Longleat paraphernalia and a couple of Christmas market type stalls selling Christmas decorations.
The Flight before Christmas, in the Long Room is good for a sit down and a warm whilst having a Longleat Christmas story read to you with the help of owls and birds of prey.
The animated Christmas tree in the courtyard, comes to life and belts out Christmas songs and snow whilst all around families dance and get in the mood for events in December.
It’s at this point that I realise photographs are going to be of more interest than my waffling, so here’s a few to whet your appetite. A Christmas treat for all the family.