The Big Tree Switch-On at Wakehurst Place

Christmas Tree Lighting at Wakehurst Place – Sussex:

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Wakehurst Place Christmas - Courtesy VisitBritain

England’s largest live Christmas tree will be lit up for the festive season on November 25th at Wakehurst Place, the  Kew Royal Botanic Gardens’ country estate in Sussex.

This amazing 36-metre (118-ft) giant redwood tree will be decorated with 1,800 lights.  So how do you decorate a 36-metre high tree?  Experts from Wakehurst’s conservation and woodland team will use ropes, specialist climbing gear and two high-level platforms to achieve this.

Carols and Children’s Activities

On the evening of November 25th, when the lights are switched on, a choir will sing around the tree and there will be Christmas craft activities for children in Wakehurst’s Elizabethan mansion. There will also be festive food and drink for sale in the Stables Restaurant and Seed Cafe, and the opportunity to do a little Christmas shopping.

On Sunday December 4, 11 and 18, carol singers will be singing in the grounds and Santa Claus will be in the mansion. Other activities will include festive walks highlighting seasonal plants around the gardens.

On Saturday December 3, 10 and 17, there will be storytelling sessions for children.

During the winter season, Wakehurst Place Gardens are open daily from 10:00 – 16:30 (except December 24–25).  Admission is £11.50 and children under 17 accompanied by an adult enter free.

The Big Tree Switch On takes place on Friday, November 25 at 18:15, admission is by donation.

How to Get to Wakehurst Place:

By Train

Haywards Heath, the closes railway station to Wakehurst Place, is approximately six miles away. From the station you can take a bus, the nearest stop is Perrymount Road (come out of the station and turn right). For details of trainlines and timetables see

By Bus

  • Bus 81 (Monday – Saturday) serves Haywards Heath
  • Bus 82 (Monday – Saturday) serves Crawley, Three Bridges and Haywards Heath. Please note there are no buses on Sundays or Bank Holidays. For further information about bus timetables see

By Car

Wakehurst Place is on the B2028 just south of Turners Hill and north of the village of Ardingly. The South of England Agricultural Showground is just a little further south.

Wakehurst Place, Ardingly, West Sussex RH17 6TN
Tel: +44 1444 894067

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