Castle Howard plans ‘epic light and sound extravaganza’ for a Christmas like no other

One of Northern Lights' amazing installations
29 Sep 2020 @ 8.14 am
| Entertainment

Christmas is still coming to Castle Howard – in a dazzling new form.

The stately home is teaming up with award-winning illumination specialists The Projection Studio to stage a brand-new outdoor concept for this festive season.

Wish Upon a Frozen Star is described as “an epic light and sound extravaganza, transforming the grounds of the estate into a winter wonderland.

Castle Howard at Christmas

“An immersive experience to delight all age groups, that journeys into the realms of festive folklore, magic and mystery.”

The creative masterminds behind the event are projection designer Ross Ashton and audio artist Karen Monid.

Their creations have included ‘Northern Lights’ at York Minster, and light shows at The Royal Military Edinburgh Tattoo and London 2012 Olympics – they even transformed Buckingham Palace into a moving picture show.

Live action and interactive surprises

They did this to Buck House

The event will see visitors following the story of Jack Frost and his icy magic through the Castle Howard estate.

“The route has some interactive surprises and live action along the way,” Castle Howard says, “leading visitors from the courtyard, into the frost-stricken Rose Gardens, along the Lime Tree Avenue, and towards the Atlas Fountain, at which point the climax of the experience is an animated light show, projected onto the South façade of the House itself, revealing the spirit of Christmas.”

Ross Ashton of the Projection Studio outlined the scale of the piece: “I believe that this will be the largest projection mapping at any illuminated garden this year, the House alone will be covered with over eight million pixels.

“Creating the light trail and the projection in this year especially has been a challenge and we salute Castle Howard for having the vision to create something new.”

The ceiling of York Minster explodes with light in one of their most famous light shows

Owner of Castle Howard Nick Howard said circumstances had brought about the collaboration.

“With this year’s pandemic, of course it has been more challenging than ever to deliver our most important and much-loved event of the calendar year. More so than ever though, we are keen to bring friends and community together, whilst everyone’s health and wellbeing remains paramount.

“The task of delivering a world-class Christmas event in the current circumstances has in fact given us the opportunity for a fresh approach and thanks to our partnership with Ross and his team, and the tireless efforts of our in-house teams, I can honestly say that the forthcoming event promises to be very special indeed, and has certainly enabled us have new insight into what can be made possible.”

There will be festive shopping, food and drink and, naturally, Father Christmas himself.

  • ‘Wish Upon a Frozen Star’ will run from 28th November until 31st December (excluding Christmas Eve and Christmas Day)
  • Tickets for the event go on sale to the public on Saturday (3 October) priced £21 – £17 adults and £15 – £12 per child
  • Full details on the website