It’s Christmas time. Almost. I’m one of those, “before December is too early to talk about Christmas” people. But even I have to concede that the holiday season properly kicks off in Reading this weekend, as we get not just one, but two Christmas markets in town. After that there’s pretty much one market a week, throughout December. So to get you (and me) in the festive mood, I’ve rounded up a list of the Reading Christmas Markets where you can find the perfect present, stock up on Christmas decorations, cards or food.
Now you don’t have any excuse not to shop local this December. Find the market for you, whether its an artisan and craft fair, a quick Christmas card stop or even a fresh Christmas tree sale.
Reading Etsy Christmas Market
Saturday 30 November, 11am-6pm, St Laurence Church, read more
Etsy.com’s local network of crafty kids take it offline for one day as Reading’s maker community come together to sell their wares for Christmas. Expect lots of crafts, homeware and art including stalls selling 3D printed vases, ceramics, statement jewellery, clothing and beauty products.
The Yattendon Christmas Barn
30 November-1 December, 7 December – 8 December, 14 December to 15 December, Yattendon Estate, read more
Yattendon Estate have been growing high quality Nordman fir and spruce trees for over 20 years. Every winter, they give their barn a Christmas makeover and sell this year’s crop, so you can pick a freshly grown tree, up to 8ft high for Christmas.
On top of that, for three weekends in December the barn will host full-on Christmas markets with craft and gift stalls, Father Christmas, a Lucky Dip, Christmas entertainment and a hog roast. Plus it’s an excuse to pop into the excellent nearby West Berkshire Brewery.
Indie Christmas Market
Sunday 1 December, 12-5pm, Double-Barrelled Brewery, read more
From the organisers behind the semi-regular Brewdog indie markers markets comes this festive special and a great use of the spacious Double-Barrelled tap room. There’ll be stalls including jewellery from The Big Happy, jam from The Jam Lady and scened candles from Amora and art from Conversational Prints. There’s also food from Makan Malaysia and of course lots of beer on tap from Double-Barrelled. Plus this one’s dog friendly.
Caversham Late Night Christmas Shopping
Friday 6 December, 5.30-8.30pm, Caversham precinct, read more
The Caversham Artisan and Farmers’ Market usually takes over the Waitrose car park twice a month. But for Christmas they’re running a late night shopping evening, so we can all shop independent for presents. There’ll be market vendors, food and drink stalls, live music and, I hear, mulled wine to get us in the holiday spirit. Vendors usually include Honeys of Henley, baked goods craft coffee, crafts and cool hand crafted wooden gifts from Buffalo and Pink. There’ll also likely be Christmas wreaths and decorations.
Reading Green Market
Sunday 8 December, Market House, read more
Have yourself a very sustainable Christmas with this market of green vendors organised by Le Petite Bouche Bakery. There’ll be eco-friendly things for the home and workplace, beauty products and vegan snacks and the above charming wooden gifts from Love Heartwood Designs. That’s all along with drinks and food from the Market House bar and pop up kitchens.
Cards for a Good Cause
Monday – Saturday, 9.30am-3.30pm, until 18 December, Reading Minster Church.
Although not strictly speaking a market, this is, never-the-less, a great stop for Christmas cards, wrapping and trimmings. All cards are sold in aid of a variety of charities, from nationals like Age UK to local funds like No 5 Counselling and Daisy’s Dream. It’s a great opportunity to pick up your Christmas staples and support good causes at the same time. Plus, you’ll get to admire the huge and beautiful John Lewis-decorated Christmas tree in the Minster Church.
Hello! I'm Claire, the founding editor of Explore Reading. I'm a Reading native and former digital director of Time Out Shanghai. I founded Explore Reading so no one can say, ‘there’s nothing to do in Reading’, again. When not editing Explore Reading, I'm probably drinking a Manhattan.