For all of my childhood I lived near Milton Keynes and so part of our Christmas traditions was to visit the Centre MK to see their Christmas displays. There were so many fabulous ones over the years. My absolute favourite was the year they did a whole elf village. As a small child, wandering in and out of a whole village, peering into the windows was magical. There was also the year they did Toad of Toad Hall which was another favourite. Sadly, over the years the displays became less impressive. It culminated in the year they did Snow White! The main attraction was a huge mountain in the hall, with a cackling witch flying overhead. Not only was it slightly terrifying, but as I was working in one of the shops bordering the hall, we had to put up with a cackling witch for over a month! Total nightmare.
However, since the Snow White debacle, things have improved dramatically. Not back to the magic of when I was small, but still great for children. Each year Middleton Hall is transformed into a winter wonderland complete with animatronic animals. There is also a craft market, a train ride, a carousel and, of course, Santa’s Grotto.
As we had already planned to visit Santa at our local farm, we decided we would take the kids to the Centre MK to see the winter wonderland. We figured we could ride the train and carousel but bypass seeing Santa. As we currently have both children at home, it was made even easier that we could go on a Friday afternoon when it was pretty quiet!
The children absolutely loved it! Little Sir kept pointing out all the ‘beautiful lights’ and Little Miss adored the carousel. Mr N even became quite animated on the carousel, happily riding it with the children. The only downside we had was the cost. We knew it would cost something, but it cost £2 per person to ride the train! This was for a 2 minute train ride around the area you could see from the side. The children did love it, but in the future we would probably only take one of us with the kids to save a little bit of money.
All in all, it was a great place to bring awe and wonder to the children. The joy and excitement on their faces was so wonderful to see, and it definitely started the festive season off right! If you are anywhere within reach of the Centre MK, it’s definitely worth a visit!
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