Disclosure: We were provided with free tickets and a complimentary photo for the purpose of this post.
We recently popped into town and, while we were there, headed into House of Fraser to visit their in-store grotto, which has been running each Christmas at the store for quite a few years now.
This year, House of Fraser are raising money for the Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity’s Moments of Magic campaign which is a cause we are proud to support. Lydia is actually headed to the hospital on Friday for her eye surgery, so this Christmas we are feeling very grateful for the amazing staff and all they do at the hospital.
£1 from every ticket sold goes to the charity. The Moments of Magic Christmas campaign aims to make sure that patients and families at the hospital experience magical moments all year round, not just at Christmas time.
As you enter the Grotto, you walk through a winter wonderland as you queue to see Santa – complete with footprints to follow and the reindeer’s stable to explore. It’s similar to last year but has been rearranged and updated so it isn’t exactly the same experience. An elf welcomes you into Santa’s grotto, where each child gets the opportunity to speak to him and have a photo taken with him – plus receive a gift. The girls loved to explore the grotto on the way to seeing Santa, and particularly liked the moving reindeer!
As well as visiting Santa, you can explore a little ‘street’ of shop windows to peer through including Santa’s Toy Shop, Mrs Claus knitting by the fire, and the elves workshop. They even have last year’s TV advert star, the glitterball snowman, on display.
A new addition this year is a space for children to do some Christmas colouring and a little wooden chalet where they can sit and enjoy some Christmas story books, which helps to keep the children happy and entertained while parents are queuing for then arguing over which photo products to buy!
Overall it is a lovely experience for the children and I’m really pleased they managed to have a grotto again this year after the uncertainty about the store staying open. The only criticism we had was that the quality of the printed photo wasn’t great.
It costs £7 for children and £1 for adults, with all the proceeds from adult tickets going to the hospital and £1 from each child ticket. You can purchase photo souvenir products, and the grotto is running until Monday 24th December. Pre-booking is advised, but walk in slots may be available too. The Grotto is located on the fifth floor of House of Fraser (in the Hamleys toy shop), on Corporation Street in the Birmingham City Centre.
To make a donation of £5 to the Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity Moments of Magic campaign, text MAGIC to 70456. Thank you!