The Wishing store at the Lexicon Bracknell was the perfect opportunity to get my Christmas fix in early with the kids this year.
Father Christmas should certainly pay his marketing elves some overtime as the idea of a Christmas letter writing experience where you meet real-life fairies and elves who live and work in Lapland UK was simply genius.
Now I may be a little biased as we are due to visit Lapland UK again this year, however at £5 a ticket for the Wishing store I think it’s accessible enough for those who might be seeing Santa elsewhere. It also gives a lovely taste into what the larger Lapland Uk experience is like. (which may I add is nothing short of amazing)
On arrival we were greeted by the characters who were milling around the store in full dress up. The shop was cosy and decked out beautifully with old fashioned carts selling Christmas decorations and Lapland UK merchandise.
After a little wait, Wish the Fairy read the Children a short story book whilst they sat on little tree stumps under the wishing tree. She managed to keep the children entertained enough for just over 5 minutes before the rest of the elves joined her and they sang some short and sweet Christmas jingles whilst encouraging the children to join in.
The ‘small folk’ were then ushered over to cute vintage looking desks and provided with a pen and themed paper to write their letters to Santa. The characters milled around the children at this point interacting and chatting on their level. It was thoroughly lovely to watch!
My two youngest, 3 and 5 years old were excited and immersed in the experience. My eldest who is 9 joined in happily even though he discovered the truth about Father Christmas last year. You can read more about how we told him here.
The children then stuck the magic stickers down and the elves helped them post it in the wishing post box. (more behind the scenes video snippets on my instagram highlights)
We had time for cuddles and photos with the elves and fairies and I cringed at all the parents struggling to take photos in the dark and resisted the urge to step in and make suggestions (this is a constant internal battle I have as a photographer, I always want to help!)
I only had my mobile phone on me however I managed a few photos in the dark! If you are intending on taking photos with the characters head for the letter writing area where there is a little more light!
At the end, the children received a branded Lapland UK paper gift bag containing stickers, an activity book and a pencil.
Good to know
- It is chiefly a shop at the front and other members of the public can watch and hear what is going on. Your child will be given a sticker once the stories start and the wishing tree storytelling is in a roped off area.
- There didn’t seem to be one particular person in charge the whole time so we waited around a bit to begin with, but this may be different during busier periods.
- The merchandise is incredibly tempting so take some pennies!
- There was no where to put coats which was a pain trying to carry them and juggle three children and take photos.
- You can certainly still enjoy it even if you have already booked elsewhere to see Father Christmas.
14 November 2019