National Civil War Centre Launches Winter Events Programme

Posted on: Tuesday, October 25, 2022

Newark’s National Civil War Centre has announced a fantastic new programme of events this winter. From craft workshops to historic afternoon teas, toddler takeovers, fascinating talks and a festive film, there’s something for all ages to enjoy.

The fun kicks off this Friday, 28 October, with Nelly: The Folk Musical in the Tudor Hall. Packed with belting songs and both funny and sad moments, this witty show tells the story of 17th century actress and celebrity Nell Gwynne. The play will be performed again on Tuesday 1 November in the Undercroft at Newark Castle.

The Centre’s popular Time Travelling Teas continue from Tuesday 1 November with 17th Century Coffee Culture. Offering a gastronomic guide to the history of teatime, these events are hosted by fantastic speakers who explore the foodie fashions of the past while guests sample a delicious afternoon tea, trying out the tastes of times gone by.

Families can come together to enjoy fun activities too with the return of monthly Family Saturdays on the first Saturday of the month. Saturday 5 November’s event is titled Remember, Remember and invites visitors to celebrate Guy Fawkes Night by making colourful bonfire pictures and a peg-doll Guy to sit on top, plus, as always there’ll be family-friendly tours and a Quiet Hour from 3pm, enabling visitors with sensory needs to better enjoy the museum. The following edition, on Saturday 3 December, will see the chance to create fabulous printed Christmas cards inspired by the museum's collection and join felt artist Eve Marshall to make felted Christmas tree decorations.

Even littler visitors are invited to join in the fun on Thursday 10 November as under 5s take charge of the museum for Toddler Takeover Day. This free event will give them a chance to try out museum ‘jobs’ for a day from security guards finding missing objects to curators choosing what to display. This expands on the Centre’s free Mini Museum sessions for toddlers and their parents or carers which run every Thursday in term time from 10.30am to 11.30am.

Hands-on fun isn’t just for the kids, there are some brilliant craft activities with a festive twist for older teens and adults to try over the next few months. First, on Thursday 17 November, artist Elaine Winter will be hosting an introduction to printmaking without a press so that you can create your own design to print on Christmas cards or gifts. Then, on Friday 16 December, there’s a chance to decorate a Christmas wreath to take home adorned with a seasonal favourite… sprouts! Participants will each create a charming light-up wreath under the tutelage of Kristina from Quirkshops while enjoying a hot drink and cake.

A great range of fascinating talks are also on offer from a look at the life and research of ‘Inventor of Archaeology’ William Stukeley alongside object handling and a gallery tour on Wednesday 2 November to an in-depth journey through the ups and downs of the Newark Torc’s journey and an insight into the research being done on similar torcs by speaker Dr Tess Machling at The Torc Talk on Saturday 26 November. 

History enthusiasts will also enjoy the exclusive chance to join a private tour of the galleries, led by the Centre’s Collections and Exhibitions Team, at Christmas With The Curator. The evening event, on Thursday 8 December, will see festive drinks and nibbles proffered along with wonderful anecdotes about working behind the scenes in the museum.

Continuing the yuletide theme, there will be a special Christmas edition of the Tudor Hall Film Club on Wednesday 14 December as this uniquely charming location plays host to festive favourite The Muppet Christmas Carol with tickets on sale for just £5.

2022 at the Centre will close with their final 'Year of Play' school holiday activities taking place during the Christmas holidays. Running from Wednesday 22 to Saturday 31 December, there will be free entry to the museum for Newark and Sherwood residents with lots of ways to play throughout the galleries, family-friendly labels and the chance to take the perfect Christmas selfie in the costume area. Plus, from Wednesday 7 to Saturday 31 December, anyone with a ticket to the Palace Theatre Newark’s spectacular pantomime Cinderella will be able to visit the museum for just £1 as part of their special Panto Pound Promo.

Councillor Rhona Holloway, Portfolio Holder for Economic Development and Visitors at Newark and Sherwood District Council, said: “The National Civil War Centre team have a truly fantastic series of activities planned. Winter can be a depressing time for some with cold and dark nights drawing in, so I always think it’s wonderful to have events to look forward to and to take up new hobbies or crafts to while away a chilly evening; this programme has made that so much easier and with things to do for all ages, no one is left out of the fun.”

For more information and full listings of events at the National Civil War Centre, visit