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York believed to be the most 'Christmassy City'


5:52am 22nd November 2010

As the only city in the country to host its very own parade  of Christmas angels and something  seasonal for visitors to do every day until the big day itself - whether it's Medieval, Georgian, Victorian or New Age  -  York declares itself the UK's undisputed  'Christmas Capital'.
The Lord Mayor of York, Cllr Mrs Susan Galloway, is today, 22nd November, declaring York the most 'Christmassy' city in the UK, offering more festive sights and sounds for visitors to enjoy during the holiday season than you can shake a holly branch at.
The Lord Mayor of York says: "From St Nicholas' Fayre in November to the beautiful Service of Nine Lessons and Carols in the inspiring York Minster on Christmas Eve, we want everyone to know that nowhere in the country can beat York for throwing itself into the festive spirit.
"Whether it is a contemporary or classic Christmas experience you want, anyone coming to York from November onwards will be amazed by what this extraordinary city has to offer. I'd encourage anyone in search of some festive fun to come and see for themselves. I truly believe York is the country's 'Christmas Capital'."
The Lord Mayor's claim comes as the whole city moves up a gear and prepares something festive for people to enjoy each and every day from now until the big day itself including:
"    The Festival of Angels - set amongst cobbled streets lined with sparkling ice sculptures and covered in a guaranteed shower of snowflakes
"    Christmas throughout the ages with a dazzling Georgian Christmas at Fairfax House - the finest Georgian townhouse in England, a Dickens of a Christmas at the Mansion House - the official residence of the Lord Mayor of York, Christmas the Victorian way at York Castle Museum or the chance to deck the halls and celebrate a medieval Christmas at the stunning Barley Hall
"    A multitude of Christmas markets starting with St Nicholas Arts & Crafts or Medieval Markets and continued with an International Fayre, a Children's Market, the Made in Yorkshire Christmas Market and the Christmas Farmers' Market
"    Handel's Messiah in the atmospheric York Minster - Europe's largest gothic cathedral north of the Alps - or the Minster's Nine Lessons and Carols Service on Christmas Eve, Carols by Candlelight from the York Minster Chapter House Choir, York's award-winning Early Music Christmas Festival or Christmas carols on the beautifully decorated Victoria Street at York's Castle Museum
"    The Jamia Festival in Dean's Park at York Minster is a 'mini Womad' which takes place inside giant heated and lantern-lit Nordic tepees. A feast of world music, food and dance, by day you can enjoy a free programme of performances and workshops and by night your ticket will get you a glass of mulled wine, a hot winter supper, and a spectacular programme.
Archbishop of York and Tourism Ambassador for the city, Dr John Sentamu backs today's claim saying: "Nowhere gets into the Christmas spirit quite like York does and there is a real buzz around the entire city as preparations for this very special time of year get underway. Across York local people are determined to show visitors the warmest of welcomes and to ensure everyone enjoys the city's unique atmosphere and the many Christmas events and activities it has to offer.
"I know what an extremely hectic time of year this can be. The Minster in York is one of the busiest cathedrals in the country at this time of year and we are looking forward to welcoming thousands of people to our special Christmas services. But whether it's the spiritual or the more festive side of the season you are looking for, taking some time out in York in the run up to Christmas is a wonderful experience."
Other attractions on offer include:
"         Street after cobbled street of beautifully decked Christmas shop window displays and more independent shops than any other city of its size in the UK
"         Ice skating rinks at the National Railway Museum and the Ice Factor at York Designer Outlet
"         Christmas pantos a plenty including Cinderella and Jack and the Beanstalk starring the UK's longest serving pantomime dame, Berwick Kaler at the York Theatre Royal  
"         Santa cruises along the river Ouse
"         A delicious Choccie and Sweetie tour of the city - home to York chocolate makers Terrys and Rowntrees - with free samples
York resident, Mrs Karen Christmas, a native of Denmark, who moved to live in York with her husband in 1996 says: "York can put anyone in the Christmas spirit. My husband usually has a lot of work on at this time of year so I really look forward to all of York's Christmas markets and festivals, special carol concerts and the Festival of Angels. There really is nowhere else quite like it - and I consider myself a bit of an expert!"
Gillian Cruddas Chief Executive of Visit York says: "Simply put, York is Christmas. A special place to be any time of the year, at Christmas York really pulls out all the stops. We are confident in staking our claim to be the most Christmassy city in the UK and that no other city in the entire country does Christmas with such aplomb."
Visit York's 'A Break with Tradition' offer of three nights for the price of two at participating hotels and guest houses will make it even easier for visitors to get into the festive spirit. The special promotion is available between 1st November and the end of March 2011, and also includes offers in shops, restaurants and attractions throughout the city. Visit or call 01904 550088 for more information.
For more information about York's packed Christmas programme visit

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