The only Tier 4 that existed last Christmas was the fourth tier of trifle, but that won’t stop us making the most of the holidays. While the new restrictions might not be quite as much fun as booze-soaked custard, we’ve brought you some ideas to keep you busy for the next two weeks. (OK, you might not be that busy, but we're hoping the Gods of Netflix and the BBC are also going to come through for us.)
If you’re spending Christmas alone, you don’t fancy cooking, or you can’t face the prospect of Christmas food shopping, there are many restaurants and takeaways still offering deliveries. It might not be traditionally festive, but let's face it, if you end up eating fish and chips for Boxing Day brunch it won't be the weirdest thing that's happened this year. You can check out some of our favourites here.
The Lyric Hammersmith has partnered with the Pins and Needles theatre company to bring you an online version of Raymond Briggs’ Father Christmas. The show will be running until Christmas Eve and you can buy tickets online here. Meanwhile Finborough Theatre is running free online performances until 31 December.
Exercise might be the last thing on your mind, but it’s a good way to keep your spirits up (and a good excuse for eating all the pigs-in-blankets afterwards). The Ravenscourt Boot Camp will continue with live, online drop-in classes over Christmas, where you can join others who’ll all be exercising (and cursing their love of mince pies) at the same time.
Online museum activities
Museums won't be open this year, but you can still take advantage of the great activities on offer. Check out the London Transport Museum for dozens of ideas to keep children (and grown ups) busy or the Museum of London for an online Victorian Christmas experience. And don't forget all that dinosaur-themed fun over at The Natural History Museum.
Walkwell are local short walks encouraging socialising and increased activity in the borough. While the programme is primarily aimed at older people, anyone can download the routes and try them out. You might be missing out on your usual winter holiday, but you can still enjoy exploring Hammersmith and Fulham.
If you’ve got young children, or you just want to make your walks more interesting, you could try foraging for natural Christmas decorations. The Woodland Trust has some guidelines on how to do this responsibly in your area, as well advice on which plants make the prettiest decorations. (Hint, there’s pine cones involved.)
For social media users who will be on their own this year, the #joinin hashtag on Twitter will be a space to meet others who are doing the same. It’s not new for Covid, it’s existed for several years, but this year it’s expected that a lot more people will be tweeting and joining the party.
Virtual carol singing
Unfortunately group singing indoors has been off the cards for a while now, but that doesn't mean you can't watch a virtual concert. Tier 4 means a lot of London events have been cancelled, but many of the ones that have already taken place were recorded and can be watched online. Support Carer's Trust or Shelter by checking out their concerts, or organise your own with family members on Zoom.
If you need help, don’t be afraid to ask. You can reach the council’s Community Aid Network if you’re worried about support, food, isolation or anything else. There’s also online activities being arranged by Age UK, as well as a befriending service for those who need it.
Stuck in a 3676 hour queue for an Ocado slot? Don't worry. If you’re keen to avoid the crowds this week and need to do a last minute Christmas shop for your family, try our list of small, local grocery stores. They have Covid-safe policies in place so you can steer clear of the crush. If you're isolating or can't get out, contact 07960199755 for help from the local Mutual Aid Group.