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About the festival

Ulverston's Dickensian Christmas Festival is one of the most popular Christmas festivals in the country. It attracts thousands of people, but it's not too packed for visitors and local people to wander around and have a fabulous time and savour the wonderful atmosphere of a traditional market town in the Dickensian era.     


As a community event, we rely heavily on local people. As a result we may be refining our exact programme until just before, and even during, the event itself.    


As well as Ulverston's fantastic specialist shops, pubs and cafes, cobbled streets and great atmosphere, there is a huge variety of free entertainment, free events for children, costume competitions, balloon modelling, music, dancing, and it's all FREE!  Plus there's a wonderful traditional fairground, complete with Helter Skelter, and lots of music from Folk to Brass Bands.  


There is also a fabulous Christmas market, with lots of unusual gifts and festive food.  Plenty of opportunity for Christmas Shopping, plus lots of places for food and drink and a sit down.


Why not come in costume and enter into the spirit of the event, and take part in our period dress competition and the grand parades around the town on both days?


Unlike the Victorians, we've carefully considered our impact on the environment. For the mulled wine stalls, we've invested in new thermostatically controlled double-skinned heating urns from Roband. Our double-walled paper cups are sourced from Naturepac, and are fully recyclable. They are coated internally with EarthCoating, which is a highly-mineralized resin alternative to polyethylene. The cups are printed with vegetable-based inks. Of course the real start of the show is the hot mulled wine, locally brewed using quality red wine and traditional bags of spices. Absolutely delicious!


"The Dickensian weekend marks the beginning of Christmas for me!"



"The Dickensian is like Ulverston's very own Fringe Festival."



“Mulled Wine, Shopping, Street Theatre, Hog Roasts, Rides for the kids. We wish we'd come for two days.”


Festival organisation

A Committee of Voting Members is accountable for festival strategy, governance, management, finances, and regulatory/legal compliance, including the festival constitution, financial budgeting & controls, financial accounting, insurance, health & safety, environment, licensing (music & alcohol), food hygiene, volunteer management, safeguarding, risk management, operating policies, event management plan, marketing, communications, and meeting minutes. Key roles of Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer, and Secretary are elected annually by the Voting Members at a formal Annual General Meeting (AGM) in March.


Non-Voting Observers are appointed by Ulverston Town Council. Other Non-Voting Volunteers may provide advice and support with event preparations and logistics, for example, by administering the website, meeting and greeting stall holders, operating mulled wine stalls, supervising catering and entertainment areas, stewarding, marshalling traffic, selling programmes, etc. Non-Voting Observers/Volunteers have no control or formal accountability, and have no right to vote at the AGM or Committee meetings.

Committee of Voting Members

  • Jan Hancock (Chair)

  • Michelle Scrogham (Vice Chair)

  • Peter Winston (Treasurer)

  • Gillian Benjamin (Secretary)

  • Neil McDougall

  • Gillian Nicholson

Non-Voting Observers/Volunteers

  • Cllr Helen Irving

  • Cllr Sharon Webster

  • Other Volunteers

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