The Suffolk punches that will be pulling Wolsey's drayAnyone looking for an unusual, memorable way to get in the festive spirit should put Thursday 7th December in their diary. That’s so they don’t miss the most unusual Christmas celebration Ipswich will probably see this year.

The landlord of The Thomas Wolsey pub on St Peter’s Street has joined forces with the Thomas Wolsey 550 Project, Friends of Ipswich Museum, Ipswich Central and The Saints CIC to hold a Tudor Christmas event at this popular Ipswich bar.

Star of the show will be Cardinal Wolsey himself. He will be welcoming two Suffolk punch horses delivering a barrel of Briarbank’s own Wolsey 550 beer to the bar.

The festivities will kick off at 3.30pm when the horses will deliver the beer.  There will be a chance to grab a selfie with His Eminence and the horses then. Musicians dressed in period costume will play authentic Tudor music from. Bards Alound will present 16th century yarns. There will also be crafts, a hog roast, hot chestnuts, Tudor characters and the chance to sample the Wolsey 550 ale.

The fun will continue into the evening. There will be a wide range of St Peter’s Street’s independent shops staying open later for essential Christmas shopping. Plus live music in the Thomas Wolsey pub.

For those who love traditional Christmas carols, the Ipswich Gilbert and Sullivan Society will be performing at 6.30pm. At 7.30pm there will be music from The Silburys. The ever-popular local group will play some favourite tracks. These will include a song which they wrote about Thomas Wolsey during lock-down, and donated to the town for the Wolsey 550 anniversary celebrations.

Entry to the Tudor Christmas celebrations is absolutely free. There will be something on offer for the whole family to enjoy from 3.30pm to later in the evening.

Speaking About the Event:

Project Director with the Thomas Wolsey 550 celebrations Kath Cockshaw said: “This is just one of dozens more events being held over coming months to mark the 550th anniversary of Wolsey’s birth in Ipswich.  Our ‘Tudor Christmas’ will be completely different to anything else being held locally and should appeal to the whole family – including those looking for an alternative to all the tinsel and Mariah Carey!

Damon Jeffery, landlord of the Thomas Wolsey pub said, “My team and I wanted to do something memorable to celebrate the anniversary of our namesake. What better than a Tudor Christmas evening?  I am very grateful to all the wonderful volunteers. Also to Blakenham Farms and to Birketts for their direct sponsorship of the event.  I can’t wait to see everyone having a great time on a site which, if history had taken a different course, could have been one of the most prestigious colleges in Britain.

The evening is open to all. There’s no need to reserve a ticket. Just come early to grab a seat from 3.30pm onwards to see the whole spectacle unfold.  Full details can be found on the events page here