Lincoln Cathedral has kicked of the Advent and Christmas season in style, welcoming tens of thousands of people during the Christmas Market and hosting sell out performances of the Snowman. And the packed schedule continues during the countdown to Christmas with the traditional services of lessons and carols.

The Cathedral is currently illuminated purple – the liturgical colour of advent – as a visual reminder of the importance of this period of contemplation and anticipation in the Christian calendar.

The towers of the building are not the only spaces benefitting from new lighting for Christmas. Lincoln Cathedral has worked in partnership with local lighting supplier Fizzco to bring a touch of festive sparkle to the new visitor centre, which opened earlier in the year.

Lincoln-based Fizzco, which supplies Christmas decorations to consumers, wholesale and commercial clients, has provided Christmas decorations for the shop, café and exterior of the new visitor centre. Director Wendy Clarkson said, “We are thrilled to add a little extra sparkle to Lincoln Cathedral Shop and Café during the festive period as their chosen seasonal décor supplier and Christmas décor partner.

“With the massive investment and significant restoration, we felt it was important to ensure the new-look Lincoln Cathedral shop and Café have Christmas decorations to match the new larger and brighter spaces. We have chosen to use one of our 25 bespoke Christmas themes, which we believe perfectly accentuates the newly revamped interior.”

The decorations certainly create a festive atmosphere that has been enjoyed by customers at the Café and Shop, both of which have special Christmas products on offer. Gingerbread lattes and mince pies have been the perfect refreshments for those attending services and events, as well as those taking a break while shopping. And the Cathedral shop is, as always, the perfect place to find unusual and unique Christmas gifts.

The Advent season continues with A Ceremony of Carols on Saturday 18 December. This festive favourite is performed by Lincoln Cathedral Youth Choir and harpist Thea Maund, and combines the music of Benjamin Brittain with the atmospheric surroundings of the Cathedral. There are still tickets available for both the 2pm and 7pm performances, which can be purchased via the Cathedral website – www.lincolncathedral.com.

A highlight of the season are the ever-popular Services of Lessons and Carols, which will take place on 23 and 24 December. These traditional services mark the beginning of Christmas for many families in Lincoln and the surrounding areas. The services will begin at 4pm. Tickets are not required, but anyone wishing to attend is reminded that masks are required in the Cathedral and visitors are asked to sanitise their hands on arrival and to try and maintain distance from other parties to allow everyone to enjoy the Cathedral in comfort and safety.

Midnight mass on Christmas Eve, welcomes Christ into the world and Eucharist and evensong also take place on Christmas Day as the celebrations begin.

On Thursday 6 January 2022 at 7.30pm, there will be Sung Eucharist for the Feast of the Epiphany, a traditional service marking the coming of the Magi to bring gifts to Christ. It will include reflective music sung by the Lincoln Cathedral Consort in St Hugh’s Choir, followed by seasonal refreshments.