Christmas is steeped in tradition and routine. It’s become a time of year when family and friends come to gather to practice a whole host of familiar rituals. From an indoor tree, to mince pies and a red suited man distributing presents.
But there are also quite a few widely accepted customs that are pretty modern. A reflection on how society and technology have changed over the past 60-70 years. So here’s our look at the Top 5 Modern Christmas traditions, something to get you warmed up for the festivities…
Ding-Dong Merrily on High… Music has been a huge part of Christmas – since Christmas was invented. It started with Christmas Carols in worship – whether that’s at the Church or on the doorstep as the Singers do the rounds.
The development of the ‘Hit-Parade’ and “Popular” music in the 1950s 50 years have seen another shift though – commercial charting christmas specials – 5 decades of christmas pop. But that’s a whole Blog in itself – so check out our special blog next week on the phenomenon of Christmas Number 1s.
Christmas is as much a food fest as it is a time of worshipful celebration. We do love to overindulge ourselves. Much of what we eat is tradition that goes back hundreds of years – mince pies on Christmas Eve or a roasted bird for lunch. Turkey with all the trimmings was the staple for most of the last part of the 20th Century, but in the 21st we’ve seen a shift to more exotic roasted lunches gracing out tables. Many are a nod back to super-extravagance of bygone eras – such as a bird, within a bird, within a bird as butchers and supermarkets try and out do each other.
Chocolate is also something we can’t get enough of throughout the Christmas break, a table without large tub of Roses, Quality Street and Miniature Heroes, is not a Christmas table, is it?
Christmas Television is another modern phenomenon. Since the 1960s when Televisions began to become a main appliance that featured in most households, the Christmas Special has become something of a standard event.
From blockbuster series – like Downton Abbey – to the big SOAP storylines in the likes of Eastenders, Corrie and Emmerdale – we love a shocking yarn over the Christmas break. We also like something that makes us laugh, and whilst there’s modern comedy find regular repeats of comedy Christmas gold – such as the Two Ronnie’s and Morecambe and Wise.
In fact – if you have an hour to spare you might enjoy this… the Two Ronnies Old fashioned Christmas Mystery. Written by Gerald Wiley (which was a secret pen name of Ronnie Barker’s).
There’s a glut of festive movies and new-to-television releases that you can watch on the TV or online services. But the big film production companies pull out all the stops to target the release of their festive family films over the Christmas Holidays.
Top of the bill for family viewing will be Disney/Lucas film’s new Star Wars movie: Rogue One. It’ll have the familiar Star Wars story world – but it’s set in time before the original 1977 film, Star Wars a New Hope.
Another surefire hit is Animated Film Sing (from the same studios that brought you Despicable Me and Minions)… it’s kind of X-Factor meets Pets – here’s a quick trail:
Outdoor events have always been a staple of the Christmas Holidays. If you’re looking for stuff to do near to our Camden, Wandsworth or Southwark storage facilities over the holiday – our special blog on what’s on will be along shortly.
In modern times there are plenty of events every day during the Christmas break, plus whole evenings dedicated to Christmas shopping. Lapland style theme parks (with varying degrees of success) seem to pop up at many open spaces. Then there are temporary skating rinks which prove massively popular and give everyone the chance to experience something of a white christmas, even if the air temperature is 10 degrees above zero!
Whichever modern christmas traditions you choose to enjoy, we hope you have a fabulous time.