Coronavirus Update Close

In line with the latest government guidance, we've put in place further measures in England to help customers practice social distancing. This includes limiting the available seats on buses.

Face coverings are compulsory when using public transport in England and Scotland. In Wales you must wear a 3 layer face covering on public transport and put it on before travelling unless you are exempt. It is also now compulsory to wear face coverings when using indoor public transport hubs in England only.

The safety of our customers and employees is our priority, so please avoid busy times, use contactless payment and take your litter with you. For up to date information see our Coronavirus page

In Wales you must wear a 3 layer face covering on public transport and put it on before travelling unless you are exempt.
In Wales you must wear a 3 layer face covering on public transport and put it on before travelling unless you are exempt.

25 fun activities you have to try this Christmas

01 Dec 2016

December is here! Get those Christmas songs on, pull out your dodgiest festive jumper and start planning your “big shop”.  But don’t let all the Christmas hoopla stress you out – here are some brilliant ways to give yourself a little lift throughout December...

christmas tree

1. Put up your advent calendar

December is the only month you’re allowed, nay, encouraged to eat chocolate every day. So don’t miss a chance and get your advent calendar ready.

2. Donate to the foodbank

Fancy an alternative to a traditional advent calendar? Why not create a “Reverse advent calendar” where you donate an item to your local foodbank for each day of advent. Check out the foodbank app to see which items are most in need in your area, and each day add a new item to your box to donate at the end of December or early January. Non-perishable items like tins of soup, tinned vegetables, toiletries, dry grains and cereals and longlife products will ensure the recipients of your donation can enjoy the food well into the new year.

3. Secret Santa

If you haven’t already, get your secret Santa organised! This is a great way to spread the cost of gifts across a wider group, and ensures everyone get a present.  Sites like Secret Santa Organizer can organise it for you via email address, and you can even add wishlists if you have a couple of hard-to-buy-for people in your group!

4. Make or paint a new ornament


As much as we love the perfectly decorated, towering Christmas trees in our shopping centres, our own trees at home can be more than a little… chaotic. Embrace the personality and character of your tree with a homemade or home-painted ornament

5. Put up the tree


Okay, so people feel very strongly about the date they put up their Christmas tree and we’re not about to engage in that debate, but we couldn’t miss it off the list. So whether your tree goes up on the 1st November or the 24th December, don’t forget to put it up!

6. Visit Santa

You can’t have Christmas without visiting Santa – otherwise you could end up on his naughty list! We have a list of some of the places he’s visiting in the UK before he has to head off to distribute presents!

7. Choose a charity to donate to instead of sending cards

Instead of Christmas cards this year, why not send e-cards and use the money you would have spent on cards and postage to donate to your favourite charity? Learn more at

8. Bake mince pies/Christmas cookies


There’s nothing better than filling your house with the delicious scent of baking! Mince pies are traditional, and Christmas cookies can be a great homemade gift (if you don’t eat them all!). Here are some of our favourite recipes.

9. Put up the wreath


Make your house extra-festive with a Christmassy wreath on your front door! Or make your own!

10. Pantomime

Fancy a festive family outing? Check out your local Pantomime! It’s fun for all the family – and you might spot some famous faces! Check out Big Panto Guide to find one near you.

11. Visit a Christmas market

What says Christmas more than twinkling lights, mugs of hot chocolate and delightful stalls of wooden ornaments, food and treats? Here are some of our favourite Christmas markets, plus our favourite things to eat and drink there!

12. Go to a Christmas carol concert

Hark! The herald angels sing! A Christmas concert is a great way to get into the festive spirit, and you’re sure to go home with a smile on your face.

13. Make a gingerbread house

gingerbread house

If you’ve conquered Christmas cookies and mince pies, why not give a gingerbread house a go? Just a head’s up though – there’s a good chance it won’t look quite like the ones on Pinterest.

14. Make a Christmas playlist

And start a debate on the best Christmas song! Is it Fairytale of New York, or Driving home for Christmas? Mistletoe and Wine or Stop the Cavalry?

15. Light festive-smelling candles

christmas candle

Cinnamon, orange, cedarwood, spiced apple, vanilla cookie… delicious!

16. Watch Christmas films

Grab your duvet, get the hot chocolate on and have a day watching your favourite Christmas films, from Elf to Die Hard.

17. Donate a toy

donate a toy

With Santa on his way to you, it’s a nice idea to donate to the children who might be less fortunate. Take your unwanted toys to your local charity shop, or contact The Salvation Army to learn more about donating toys.

18. Make epic hot chocolate

hot chocolate

Marshmallows or Maltesers? Whipped cream or sprinkles? Why not all four?! Add a dash of peppermint syrup to really make it festive.

19. Make a DIY gift

A DIY gift is a great way to tell someone you love them and is often appreciated much more than something you spent your hard-earned pennies on. What about a brownie in a jar, homemade coffee syrup or a photo calendar?

20. Make snowflakes

Snowflakes are a fun, easy way to decorate your space, and there’s nothing like the surprise of opening them up! Fancy something different? What about Storm Trooper or a ballerina?

21. Find the best Christmas lights in your area


Every town has one - that house which is completely covered in Christmas lights! Go for a stroll around your neighbourhood and try to find it, or pick your favourite Christmas lights in your area. A lovely thing to do to get out of the house on a chilly, dark December evening! 

22. Watch Christmas-only TV episodes

Grab your boxsets or hunt through Netflix and find all the Christmas episodes of your favourite TV shows. We recommend the Friends episode “The one with the Holiday Armadillo”. Guaranteed to get you in the mood!

23. Take silly Christmas jumper photos

Get your Christmas jumpers out and have a silly festive photo shoot session. You could even use the photos for next year’s e-card!

24. Create a 2017 photo calendar

Take some time to look through your phone and computer for all your favourite photos and pick the best for a 2017 photo calendar. Order some extra copies for family too.

25. Help with Christmas dinner

christmas dinner

Making Christmas dinner is hard work, so offer to help out with the biggest meal of the year. Peel potatoes, set the table, help clear up and be sure to give some extra love and TLC to the chef in your house this Christmas!