What do the British eat at Christmas

Christmas in England

Christmas traditions are not the same in all European countries. So rememberedChristmas in England more of the Christmas celebrations in the USA. Here you can find out what the meaning of "Father Christmas" is, when the presents are unpacked and what significance Boxing Day has on Boxing Day.

Christmas in England - 7 differences at a glance

  • Santa Claus is called Father Christmas in England
  • On December 24th, children hang up red socks for small gifts
  • Traditionally, the gifts are given on the morning of December 25th
  • The Queen's Christmas address will be broadcast on Boxing Day
  • On Boxing Day, people around the world receive a thank you
  • Kissing under a mistletoe is a popular custom for the celebration of love
  • The traditional Christmas dinner for the British is the turkey

Typical British Christmas customs

Christmas cake, turkey and mistletoe are only part of the festive decorations that make onetypical British Christmas party belongs to it. With a richly laid festive table, physical well-being is all-round taken care of. Christmas in Great Britain is not fundamentally different from the customs around the most beautiful festival of the year in this country.

The crucial difference is in the way the presents are presented. While this takes place in Germany on the evening of December 24th, children still have towait until the morning of December 25th. Otherwise the British just like the Germans have a really good time on the three Christmas holidays.

Christmas trees and Christmas decorations

While most Germans do not decorate their Christmas tree until the morning of December 24th, in England you can find them in full splendor in the rooms from the beginning of December. At the same time, the rooms are adorned with opulent decorations, for example with garlands around the banisters and door frames.

While red, gold and silver are popular colors for Christmas decorations in Germany, there are no special customs in England that have prevailed in this regard. Every family decorates their Christmas tree as they please. Traditionally, however, it is a bit more colorful in England than in Germany.

Fun Fact: The tradition of decorating the Christmas tree was introduced by Prince Albert, Queen Victoria's German husband. He wanted to share the beloved tradition with his English fellow citizens.

Many British people use different colors for their Christmas tree decorations. Some Christmas trees have everything from green to orange to red. Ivy and mistletoe are popular decorative items that are often hung over the door frame. A custom has it that if you stand under a mistletoe, you will soon be kissed.

The outer doors are often decorated for Christmas with opulent door wreaths, the Christmas Wrath. Not only the private houses, but also the cities are festively decorated, so that a very special atmosphere is created. Here, too, large Christmas wreaths are hung in many suitable places.

December 24th: Prepare for Christmas

On December 24th, the children prepare for the next morning to be given presents and hang up red socks for small presents. The adults also enjoy these traditions and wait for their red socks to be filled as well. It's really fun when the red socks are hung up by the fireplace.

However, since not everyone in Great Britain has a fireplace in the house, the Christmas stockings can also be hung in any other suitable place, for example on the banister. The gifts are not used by the Christ child, as is the case in German tradition, but by Santa Claus "Father Christmas" on the sledge. This is pulled by reindeer.

Entry is via the chimney or chimney. While the small gifts find their place in the red socks, large gifts like in this country are placed under the Christmas tree. Families with a real fireplace and young children burn their wish lists in the fireplace as Santa Claus can read smoke and bring the right gifts.

This day is also often used for baking. Once all the preparations are complete, the family will sit near the decorated Christmas tree and pass the time on Christmas Eve with Christmas stories and television.

December 25th: Christmas and gifts

The gifts will be given on the morning of December 25th. In the red Christmas stockings, the recipient will find sweets and small gifts such as toy cars, cosmetics or other useful products. Then the big Christmas presents are opened and examined under the Christmas tree. The celebratory meal starts at noon and can well drag on into the evening hours.

Many Britons spend the afternoon in front of the television listening to the Queen's Christmas address. A Christmas cake and the obligatory tea should of course not be missing on this occasion. During the big Christmas dinner on the evening of December 25th, a colorful paper crown is traditionally worn in England.

December 26th: Boxing Day

Boxing Day is called Boxing Day and is all about charity. Translated from English, Boxing Day means “present box day. The British use this contemplative day to express their appreciation and appreciation to family and friends.

But it doesn't stop there, because other people also enjoy this charity at Christmas, for example the postman who delivers the Christmas cards, the friendly men from the garbage disposal, nice neighbors, colleagues and teachers. Children play with their new toys and adults like to redeem vouchers, because unlike ours, shops in England will be open again on December 26th.

There are two different theories as to the origin of "Boxing Day" concerns. But neither has anything to do with boxing. The first theory is that the servants who give their masters on December 25th served, spent the second day with their families and in return received boxes of sweets from the gentlemen. According to the second theory, the name Boxing Day comes from the fact that donations for the needy were collected in boxes throughout the year and then distributed on December 26th.

The Queen's Christmas speech on December 25th

The King's or Queen's Christmas Address has been broadcast on December 25th since 1932. While the Queen's speech is now naturally broadcast on television as a tradition, Georg V's first speech in 1932 was still broadcast on the radio. While the younger generation is sometimes less positive about the monarchy, there are quite a lot of fans of the British royals among the older people who take note of special events such as weddings, births and christenings with interest. In this regard, it is eagerly awaited whether the Queen will make current family events the subject of her Christmas address.

Christmas Crackers - Christmas crackers

These are colorful paper candies that pop as soon as you pull the two ends apart. In the crackers there are small hats, sayings, puzzles or funny toys. In any case, these colorful crackers will cheer up every Christmas get-together.

Food and drink: turkey, Christmas pudding and fruit cake with icing

Most Brits love their Gregor, the name of the traditional turkey, for Christmas dinner. The stately bird is filled with apples, vegetables. Brussels sprouts and fried potatoes are served with it. A popular filling is a spicy mince mixture. Whoever celebrates a little less serves up a goose. The richly laid table is characterized above all by the numerous desserts. The most popular dessert is plum pudding (also called Christmas pudding).

However, this is not a pudding and a dessert, but a cooked or steamed mass of dried fruit, fat and bread rolls, which is poured over with brandy or other alcohol. Alternatively, there is a sweet fruit cake with icing available for everyone. Mince pies are tartlets filled with raisins, nuts, candied fruit, and alcohol. In addition to tea, people like to drink chocolate.

Christmas Carols - Well-known English Christmas carols

At Christmas time, small groups of Christmas singers roam the streets to spread a happy and contemplative Christmas atmosphere. The so-called carols are cheerful Christmas carols that have a long tradition in England. The most famous songs include:

  • We Wish You A Merry Christmas
  • Jingle Bells
  • Carol Of The Bells
  • Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
  • Thing! Dong! Merrily On High
  • O Come All Ye Faithful (Adeste Fideles)

We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Merry Christmas. Or in English "Merry Christmas".

You might be interested in that too: