Calendar of Events

Holly King - An Ancient Midwinter Celebration

Kind of Event
United Kingdom

A special experience for families to join the ancient midwinter celebration of the Holly King. In the dark, cold days of midwinter the holly tree grows green in the forest. When the summer trees have lost their leaves, the Holly King stands guard over the forest and its birds and animals, caring for them during the winter.

We celebrate the vigil of the Holly King, reminding us that although the nights are long now, the season will turn and the green leaves of spring will come again. The Holly King is hope for the coming year.

 On arrival at Butser Ancient Farm you will have the exclusive opportunity to wander between our ancient buildings, soaking up the magical atmosphere with warming fires, whilst discovering some enchanting winter solstice displays on our special Holly King trail.

 The Holly King has worked his magic and brought enchantment to Butser Ancient Farm this winter. Journey between our Stone Age, Iron Age roundhouses, Roman Villa and Saxon hall, following the Holly King's footsteps. In each time period you will find a magical display of yuletide decorations, conjured by the Holly King to bring hope and beauty in the depths of winter.

Once you have discovered the magic around the Farm, the Holly King will welcome you into our great roundhouse, transformed into a magical forest, to share in some winter solstice story telling with professional storyteller Dawn Nelson.

We are carefully limiting numbers for our Holly King experience and have planned the event so that social distancing can be maintained at all times. Please respect others and keep a safe distance when you are exploring the farm. We ask that adults wear masks within our buildings and when entering the great roundhouse for the storytelling, however once seated you may choose to remove your mask to enjoy the stories.

Please wear wellies or walking boots and wrap up warm.

A special Holly King craft activity will be emailed to you prior to the event. We encourage you to bring your creations with you to add to our wishing tree, contributing to a magical shared display.

£10 per person (adults and children) under 2’s free