A bit of history..

In 2009 the Wells Carnival ‘Crew’ took over the organisation and running of the annual Wells ChristmasTide event. The weekend event was originally set up by the Wells Business Forum but when they disbanded the Carnival committee were approached with the suggestion that they may be willing to take over the annual spectacular. At some point they must have said ‘Yes’ and the rest is history!!!!

What is Wells ChristmasTide..

Wells ChristmasTide is a weekend event held during the early part of December and is organised and run by the Wells Carnival committee (Crew). The annual event follows a similar format each year starting with a Christmas cocktail evening on the Friday evening. On the Saturday the committee organise a Christmas market with café, fireworks and a stunning illuminated procession which travels down the main street of Wells to the Quay where crowds welcome Father Christmas to Wells harbour after his long journey, by sea, from the ‘North Pole’. Children can also take part in Christmas themed workshops and visit Mother Christmas ‘at home’ while she prepares for her husbands arrival. All the events are either free of charge or a nominal charge to cover costs.

Arrival of Father Christmas

In 2014 Father Christmas is due to arrive in Wells on the high tide at approx 5.15pm on Saturday 6th December – due to the nature of the event we only have a small number of tickets available to visit Father Christmas at home. This year the committee has taken the difficult decision to limit the ages of children to age 11 and under. This is to ensure as many of the younger children get to visit Father Christmas as possible.


Tickets to see ‘Father Christmas at home’ can be ordered from Saturday 1st November online. There will also be a small number available to purchase, in person, after this date, from Wells Tourist Information Centre, Staithe Street. Tickets are £4.00 per child to include 1 accompanying adult. Due to limited space all additional adults and children over 11 will be charged at £2.50 each (max of 2 additional adults per family group). All tickets must be paid for in advance. If ordering online a stamped addressed envelope must be included with payment.

******** Father Christmas Tickets Sold Out *********


ChristmasTide ‘Ab Fab’ Cocktail Evening

Tickets for this years Cocktail Evening - Friday 5th December * The Maltings * 8pm * Tickets £22.50. Dress code (optional) – ‘Absolutely Fabulous’ or characters from the TV series. Included in price – 6 cocktails, savoury & sweet canapés. Entertainment provided by female duo ‘Sirens’ dancing ‘til late. Raffle and Maltings bar open for additional drinks. Strictly over 18s. Tickets available from Goldings, Staithe Street, by calling 07990 720887 or by post: Cocktail Evening, c/o 46 Waveney Close, Wells-next-the-Sea, NR23 1HT (chqs payable to Wells Carnival Ltd and enclose SAE). Book early to save disappointment

The arrival of Father Christmas is co-ordinated in conjunction with the Wells Harbour Commissioners www.wellsharbour.co.uk and assisted by the Wells Lifeboat crew www.wellslifeboat.org

ChristmasTide 2014

To take place over the weekend of 5th, 6th & 7th December - with Father Christmas arriving in Wells on the high tide on Saturday 6th

ChristmasTide 2014 will begin in:-

  • Days
  • Hours
  • Mins
  • Secs

Future dates

It is with regret that the Crew has taken the difficult decision to ‘hand over the reins’ of Christmas Tide making 2014 the last year the event will be organised by the Carnival Committee. Wells Carnival has grown to such an extent that unfortunately the volunteer 'crew' struggle to manage the two events. However, rest assured, in 2015 Father Christmas will still be arriving in Wells. Robert Smith and his team from the Wells Harbour office have kindly agreed to oversee the trip from the North Pole on Saturday 12th December, 2015.


Click Here for Programme 2014

Bucket collections (authorised buckets are clearly marked) are made regularly during the weekend with funds raised used to go towards covering the cost of the event

ChristmasTide 2013

Sandcastle competition

Hosting the entertainment at the Cocktail Evening.


Wells ChristmasTide photos are taken by our lovely resident photographer Cy – you can’t miss him – he is the ‘Yeti with a camera’ (his words not ours), ‘but fret ye not,’ he doesn’t bite!!!  Cy attends just about all our events, snapping away.  He then pops home, loads all the photos on the website and sends the information to our local chemist (David Jagger Ltd).  These photos can then be purchased by calling into the chemist or can be ordered by post through Cy’s website.  To view photos and further information on ordering click here: 


Wells ChristmasTide is run and organised by a team of volunteers. The majority of the weekends activities, entertainment and fireworks are free of charge and we rely on individuals and businesses to sponsor activities or make donations to cover our ever increasing costs.

Donations are always welcome to help with costs - they can be by cheque (payable to Wells Carnival Ltd) sent to: Wells Carnival Ltd., c/o 46 Waveney Close, Wells-next-the-Sea, Norfolk, NR23 1HT, OR securely online by clicking on either of the donate buttons



Sponsor a 'Pudding'

Donate a min of £5.00 and nominate a 'Christmas Pudding', which will be added to our display in The Maltings window, Staithe Street, Wells during ChristmasTide. Puddings can be for an individual, loved one or a business. One random 'pudding' will win a meal for two - Click on the Big Red DONATE button on the right (or the one above), donate a minimum of £5.00 per pud, don't forget to include the name of your nominee.


The majority of events throughout the weekend are either free or of minimal charge to offset some of the costs.  To get an indication of the type and number of events see this years programme.

The ‘Crew’ relies on sponsorship and bucket collections throughout the weekend to cover the cost of putting on all the events – so if you come along to join in the fun please make sure you put a few quid in the collection buckets.  If you can’t find a bucket you can always leave a donation at the Wells Carnival merchandise stall or you can donate using your credit or Debit card securely using the Paypal Payments gateway.

Alternatively, you can send us a cheque made out to: Wells Carnival Ltd. and send c/o 46 Waveney Close, Wells-next-the-Sea, Norfolk, NR23 1HT


Wells Carnival

Wells-next-the-Sea in the heart of North Norfolk enjoys a traditional summer Carnival for residents and visitors. A week of family fun and events including a Carnival Day procession around the town featuring floats, fancy-dress, pull-and push-along vehicles and much more. Traditional seaside activities include a sand-castle competition, town crier competition, gillying on the quay and the crowning of the Carnival Royals.

Find out more . . .