December Highlights

The countdown to the Christmas and New Year celebrations is well and truly on. Whether you’re looking for festive fun or the best of what’s on in the city, take a look at our selection of what’s coming up.

Here’s a selection of what’s coming up. More events can be found using the what’s on search.

Carlisle Christmas Artisan Market

The month starts with the climax of our artisan market. Choose your Christmas gifts in a wonderful festive setting from Wednesday 28th to Sunday December 2nd. There’ll also be fabulous food and delicious drinks, merry music and entertainment with more than 50 traders at the city centre event.

Late night shopping in The Lanes

Continuing the shopping theme, late night present buying takes over the Lanes upto Thursday December 20.

With more than 70 stores under one roof, The Lanes is the perfect shopping destination. There are high street favourites such as Debenhams, H&M, Primark and Next plus a host of specialists and a 600-space car park.

Carlisle City Council is offering free parking after 3pm on these Thursdays in Bitts Park; Caldew Riverside; Castle; Civic Centre; Lowther Street; Paddy's Market; The Sands Centre; Viaduct and West Walls.

Carlisle Cathedral

There are a host of events in the lead up to Christmas at the spectacular city centre cathedral. On Friday 7th there’s a traditional carol concert in support of Eden Valley Hospice and on Monday 10th a Christmas celebration with the University of Cumbria. Christmas Eve will have three separate events - a crib service, festival of readings and carols and midnight Eucharist.

For further information visit

Santa Dash

Santas of all ages and sizes will be taking to the streets of Carlisle on Sunday 9th.

The city’s annual Santa Dash and Fun Run are festive fun events to raise money for Jigsaw, Cumbria’s only children’s hospice. There are events over 5km and 2km.

The Sands panto – Wizard of Oz

They’re off to see the wizard this year at the region’s biggest Christmas panto.

The Sands Centre family favourite runs from Monday 10th to New Year’s Eve and feature stars from Britain’s Got Talent, Eurovision and CFM radio favourite Robbie Dee.

Old Fire Station

Live favourites Martin Stephenson & the Daintees bring their exuberant show filled with intimacy and warm humour to the OFS on Friday 7th.  And on Wedneday 12th, marking the 30th anniversary of their compilation album Tommy, The Wedding Present will be unleashing their guitar-based rhythms. The Lindisfarne show on Thursday 13th is already a sell-out, but they’re followed by the Lancashire Hotpots who’ll Carry On Hotpotting on Saturday 15th.

Tullie House Museum & Art Gallery

Previously unseen work by celebrated Cumbrian artist Percy Kelly is on display until February 24 2019.

Carlisle Racecourse

The city’s track hosts the prestigious Northern Lights Series final on Sunday 2nd. More than £200,000 in prize money will be at stake as qualified National Hunt horses battle it out in five finals. The course closes its year on Sunday 16th with its traditional Christmas Jumper meeting.

The Brickyard

The city’s up and coming rock back Hardwicke Circus are back in Carlisle for this Christmas show on Friday 28th.

Carlisle United

Looking for traditional Boxing Day football? Carlisle United are at home this year when they take on North West ‘neighbours’ Oldham Athletic at 3pm. There’s also another home game versus Macclesfield Town on Saturday 29th, also at 3pm.

For further information visit