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Our Journal

What's on in Plymouth - December

To make sure you don't miss a thing, we've put together a guide of some of the best arts and culture events to see, do, and attend in our city this festive period.

The festive season is upon us! Plymouth is lit up with Christmas lights and shopping for the big day is in full swing. With the party season upon us, we’ve pulled together the top things to do and see in Plymouth during the holidays.

Want to give us a heads up for a forthcoming event? Email editor@aup.ac.uk or let us know on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

This December, our Pre-Degree students will delight visitors in Plymouth with a selection of pop-up shops, exhibitions, miniature trade fairs and celebration of creativity and enterprise as part of the annual Design to Sell event. Celebrate some of the freshest upcoming artists and designers, with the chance to buy a unique festive gift too! Free, open to the public and cash only.

1 December 10am - 3.30pm @ Pre-Degree Campus

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Design to Sell will take place at Palace Court on December 1

Visit Alma Yard for an evening of festive treats, hand-crafted gifts and interactive workshops hosted by Wild Sea Calligraphy, Silver Roots, Cornish Interiors and Ikigai Printmaking. In addition to the talented residents, an array of local creative and makers will be selling their pieces so get ahead of the Christmas panic-buying with some unique, locally made gifts.

1 December 4pm - 7.30pm @ Alma Yard

At the Cafe With Art at its Heart in Victoria Park, there will be a number of workshops over the Christmas period. Whether you want to make felt decorations, weave a loom or knit a scarf, find your way to Victoria Park where all materials will be included in the £10 workshop cost.

1, 8, 15 December 11am - 4pm @ A Cafe With Art at its Heart

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Abigail Reynolds, Image of artist’s studio door, 2020. © The artist

Pick up some individual and unique Christmas gifts at Plymouth Christmas Market, located in the heart of the city centre on the Piazza. With an open-air festive bar, food and drink, plenty of artisan stalls and live music and entertainment, it’s the perfect place to get into the festive spirit.

1 - 18 December @ City Centre Piazza

Third year students on BA (Hons) Craft & Material Practices are hosting an ice skating event and Christmas Fair at Plymouth Pavilions to raise money for their graduate shows. There will be an opportunity to have a skate with disco lights and Christmas music followed by checking out the craft stalls and tasting some of the yummy homemade cakes for sale!

4 December from 8pm @ Plymouth Pavilions

Christmas shoppers will have plenty of opportunities to browse for unique gifts at this year’s Festive Good Food & Craft Markets, set to take place throughout December. Offering festive food treats, and a variety of handmade arts and crafts from leading local traders and creatives, the market is perfect for those looking for gifts with a difference.

4, 11 & 18 December 10am - 3pm @ Royal William Yard's Melville Building

Our Open Days offer you the chance to ask questions and find out more about studying at Arts University Plymouth. Our online events are a great option to get a feel for life at Arts University Plymouth, where you can speak directly to our expert staff and students about your options - all without having to leave the comfort of your own home!

7 December 4pm - 6pm @ Arts University Plymouth

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The Sound will be screening on 8 December at Plymouth Arts Cinema

A collection of archive film clips celebrating Plymouth’s unique relationship with the sea. Produced in collaboration with Plymouth Sound National Marine Park and with the support of the BFI, join Tony Davey, Engagement Officer at The Box, and Tors Froud, National Marine Park Engagement and Inclusion Manager, for a journey into Plymouth Sound. There will be an opportunity to ask questions at the end.

8 December 6pm @ Plymouth Arts Cinema

Featuring grunge, hip hop, electro, funk, country, fiery percussion and more, Kaboom! presents a night of great eclectic music from several local acts to raise money and food for the Stonehouse Community Fridge. Food or monetary donations will be taken on the door!

9 December 6.30pm @ Leadworks

The Barbican Theatre is offering a festive show with a difference this year with a hilarious yet poignant alternative to a festive panto. Based on a lifetime of experience onstage and backstage 'Oh No It Isn't!' is a hilariously funny and beautifully moving new play exploring the highs and lows of life in the theatre.

9 - 23 December @ Barbican Theatre

Following in the footsteps of Plymouth’s first print festival Print in Action, the inaugural Plymouth Print Social aims to be a connecting platform for printmakers, collectives, organisations, spaces and suppliers. It’s an open space no matter what stage of your creative journey. With quick fire soap box discussions, Plymouth Print Social wil be inviting local printmakers, suppliers, spaces and anybody who wants their voice to be heard, shouting about what they would like to see more of in the city and further afield.

10 December 6pm @ Ocean Studios, Royal William Yard

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Native Makers will take place at Ocean Studios on 10 December

Shop small this winter at the Native Makers Christmas Market at Ocean Studios. With over 40 of the best indie businesses in the South West, selling everything from jewellery and ceramics to plants and doggy cupcakes, there will also be kids crafts, live music, delicious food and more. It’s also free entry and dogs are welcome too!

10 December @ Ocean Studios, Royal William Yard

Hosted by Arts University Plymouth Students’ Union at our Tavistock Place campus, this is the perfect chance to get into the festive spirit. From illustrations to ceramics, students from across the university will be selling their wares, so come along and find unique, handcrafted gifts for the whole family! Free and open to the public.

13 - 15 December @ AUP:SU

‘Our Home’ is a collection of thoughts and feelings from women who have settled in Plymouth. They have compared life in their lands to their home in Plymouth. They have selected archive films to tell their stories and which show the similarities and the differences. Through the film they want to celebrate what unites us. This is an opportunity to share different voices and celebrate the diversity of life in Plymouth. The film will be followed by a screening of ‘The Personal History of David Copperfield’.

14 December 12.30pm @ Plymouth Arts Cinema

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Rhys Morgan will be performing his sea shanties at Plymouth Art Cinema followed by a Q&A on 15 December

The choir was formed as part of Rhys' Give & Takeover commission exploring queer motifs within seafaring history and collective performance in marginalized communities through the tradition of shanty singing. Over recent months, the choir have used their lived experience to rework existing shanties and inspire new ones, continuing the tradition of these folk songs being adapted time and again through generations.

15 December 6pm @ Plymouth Arts Cinema