Thursford's Enchanted Journey of Light returns without Santa in 2021

Santa's Magical Journey at Thursford. Picture: Ian Burt

Father Christmas will not be making an appearance at this year’s Thursford Christmas Spectacular. - Credit: Ian Burt

Preparations are well under way for this year's Thursford Christmas Spectacular - though Father Christmas will not be making an appearance. 

The beloved Norfolk variety show will run for seven weeks during the festive season, from November 9 to December 23, with more than 3,000 performers auditioned already and a new lighting experience on the way.

But in an online post the UK’s biggest Christmas show revealed the news that Santa will be “ice-olating” in the North Pole. The show, though, will go on.

On Facebook, the team wrote: “Fear not, his magical journey will still be available to marvel at through the indoor wonderland trail as part of our Enchanted Journey of Light. 

"You will travel past the penguins and polar bears to the giant-sized teddy bears. Then past the busy elves hard at work in the toy factory using the wondrous wrapping machine.

The Thursford Christmas Show. Picture: Ian Burt

Father Christmas will not be making an appearance at this year’s Thursford Christmas Spectacular. - Credit: IAN BURT

“Your journey continues as you venture outside to the Lantern Light Extravaganza, bigger and better for 2021 and with lots of new creatures for you to marvel at: a beautiful, breath-taking festival of luminous sculptures, from a fantasy underwater world to the wilds of the North Pole.” 

A spokesperson for Thursford said: "Sadly, Santa being on site, logistically for us at Thursford in the current climate is not a possibility at the moment.

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"With regards to our Enchanted Journey of Light, even though the government have lifted all restrictions, it is a ticketed event, so we have limited the amount per time slot.

"This is so that the site can operate at a safe level and so that the journey will not get congested and will flow through to a four-acre Lantern Light Extravaganza of beautiful and breath-taking outdoor luminous sculptures, bigger and better than 2020.

"We have also kept all hygiene precautions with sanitizing stations throughout the site."

John Cushing OBE, chief executive, founder, producer and director of Thursford Christmas Spectacular, said they were "absolutely thrilled" to return.

"It is such an important occasion, not just for the cast and crew but the local community, hotels, B&Bs, rental properties and hospitality venues throughout Norfolk," he said.

Tickets for The Enchanted Journey of Light can be purchased via its website from September 2. Visit here,