Visitors of all ages marvelled at the spectacular flower arrangements, supped a glass of complimentary mulled wine (or spiced berry cordial) and enjoyed a wide range of local Christmas entertainment as Gilbert White’s House played host to this year’s Mulled Wine Weekend. The event, expanded from last year due to its success, was a relaxing weekend of festive merriment.
Guests helped the garden team awaken the apple trees by wassailing them with wine soaked toast, noise, beating, traditional chanting and, on Sunday, folk music led by Amanda Whitaker. Wassailing has taken place at the house for many years which may go some way to explain why the trees at Gilbert White’s House crop so well each year. Apple Jelly made from Gilbert White’s House apples was available in the shop for those who wanted to taste the fruits of last year’s wassailing.
The choirs performed in the Great Parlour amongst the carefully researched period decorations, lovingly created throughout the house by Gilbert White’s dedicated team of volunteer flower arrangers. On Saturday Guests were delighted by the Pupils from Alton Convent with solo performances as well as their choir. Volunteers, staff and guests joined in carol singing throughout the day. On Sunday morning the pupils of Selborne Primary School charmed crowds with their traditional Christmas songs. The Great Parlour was once again brought to life in the afternoon with Wickham Baggie Dancers, The Farnborough Mummer’s re-enactment of King George and the dragon and beautiful choral harmonies of Shuffle Tunes.
Our special thanks go to all the performers and volunteers for helping to make this such a successful event. With thanks also to Waitrose for helping to provide refreshments, and to The Greyfriars in Chawton and Spirit in Alton who provided raffle prizes of a complimentary meal for two and pedicure respectively.
The event raises funds for the museum which is an Independent Charitable Trust.