Huge winter festival to takeover Freight Island and Mayfield Park this festive season – including stunning light show

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Freight Island and Mayfield Park are the places to be this winter.

Freight Island and Mayfield Park are gearing up to host the largest heated indoor and outdoor winter festival this festive season – including a brand new immersive light show trail.

Winter Island will open Friday 17 November and will run up until Sunday 31 December. It will see the park and venue transformed into a Christmas wonderful, with food, drink and entertainment suitable for adults and children alike.

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There will be new pop-up food and drink vendors opening on the site, joining the existing line-up of traders at Freight Island. There will also be other things to enjoy, such as a dog show, Santa’s grotto and wreath making workshop, to name but a few. The main attraction this year, however, is sure to be the new Twilight Trail light show.

The Twilight Trail

The Twilight Trail is an immersive light show taking place at Mayfield Park for the first time this winter. It will run from Friday 17 November to Sunday 31 December.

Tickets for November will cost £8 per person and December tickets will cost £9. Family tickets, which covers two adults and two children, are also available for £28 in November and £32 in December. All tickets can be purchased via the Twilight Trail website.

A CGI image of what to expect from Winter Island & The Twilight Trail.A CGI image of what to expect from Winter Island & The Twilight Trail.
A CGI image of what to expect from Winter Island & The Twilight Trail. | Freight Island

The trail starts in the park and finishes at Freight Island, where there will be plenty see and do, if you choose to make an evening of it. It lasts 30 minutes in total.

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Jon Drape from The Twilight Trail said: “We are thrilled to bring a new festive experience to Mayfield Park this year. The Twilight Trail’s unique light installations will completely transform this incredible park.

“We are very proud to be able to deliver such a wonderful experience at an affordable price this year, whether for the family, groups of friends or a date night. Combined with the opportunity to visit the brand-new Winter Island next door we believe Depot Mayfield is set to be an unrivalled Christmas destination in the UK.”

What else is there to do?

Kids will be pleased to know that Santa is taking over the Freight Island Plant Room, which is being transformed into a Grotto. The Visit Santa Experience lasts 30 minutes and includes a small Lego gift, a Lindt Chocolate and photo opportunity with the man himself. Tickets cost £22.50 per child (accompanying adults go free) and can be booked via the Design My Night platform.

What to expect from Winter Island & The Twilight Trail.What to expect from Winter Island & The Twilight Trail.
What to expect from Winter Island & The Twilight Trail. | Freight Island

The Mezz area of Freight Island is also getting a transformation this year and will be turning into an Alpine Lodge, created in partnership with Grey Goose. There will also be Santa Paws dog show, wreath making workshop with Northern Lights, curated entertainment with DJs and live performances.

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Which food traders will be there?

There will be a number of food traders popping up at Freight Island only for the festive season. These include chocolatiers Cocoa Cabana, who are offering build-your-own hot chocolate with boozy options, Parmogeddon will be bringing their Teeside speciality to Manchester, Lasagna pros Lazy Tony’s will be showcasing their brand new all-cheese concept that includes Italian American toasties, deep fried sides of Burrata in tomato sauce, melted Camembert, Taleggio nuggets as well as garlic and herb oil loaded roasties with pizza, hot chicken, pesto, and poutine toppings.

Also new to Freight Island are Smoking Coal German BBQ, who will be serving Schweinshaxe in a bun, a whole Bratwurst menu and a classic Hog Roast butty, and there will also be a Paulaner bar every Sunday.

The existing Freight Island favourites will also be there, including Burgerism, Voodoo Ray pizza, Lazy Tony’s Lasagnaria, award-winning curry in a pie from Patel’s Pies, tandoori and Indian street food from Payal, Venezuelan cuisine from Mia’s Arepas, pan-Asian cuisine from FUKU, Mediterranean street food, from Mega Gyros, cheesecake on a stick from Oh My Cheesecake, and fries in a cone from Fry-By.

Smoking Coal German BBQSmoking Coal German BBQ
Smoking Coal German BBQ | Smoking Coal German BBQ

How to book?

You can book a table now via the Winter Island website.

Bookings for larger parties and private hire can also be made via email at [email protected]. A Christmas sit-down menu is also available for parties of 20 or more. It costs £35 for two courses and £40 for three courses per person.

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Starters will be served family style, including grilled sourdough with burnt onion butter, chicken liver and brandy parfait with fig jam, smoked salmon, prosciutto and more. Mains options include honey & marmalade glazed ham, roast turkey ham, roast topside of highland beef, and wild mushroom & butternut squash wellington. Trimmings include pigs in blanket, sage and onion sausage meat stuffing wrapped in bacon, garlic and rosemary roast potatoes and more. For desserts, options include plum and apple crumble, christmas pudding ice cream, lemon meringue pie, and sticky toffee pudding with vanilla ice cream.

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