​It's the Countdown to Christmas and we want to help make sure that you have a great time, keep safe, and know what's happening across the district in the run up to the big day. On these pages you will find a range of information to help get your Christmas off to a great start.

On these pages you will find a wealth of information on:

Chichester Christmas lights Chichester Christmas lights
Baubles Baubles
Christmas in Midhurst Christmas in Midhurst
Christmas shopping Christmas shopping
Christmas in Selsey Christmas in Selsey
Father Christmas Father Christmas
Lombard Street, Petworth by Simon Cooke Lombard Street, Petworth by Simon Cooke
Stockings Stockings
Thumbnail image of Chichester Christmas lights
Thumbnail image of Baubles
Thumbnail image of Christmas in Midhurst
Thumbnail image of Christmas shopping
Thumbnail image of Christmas in Selsey
Thumbnail image of Father Christmas
Thumbnail image of Lombard Street, Petworth by Simon Cooke
Thumbnail image of Stockings
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Chichester District Council Christmas opening times

Chichester District Council offices at East Pallant House will be closed from 3pm on Monday 24 December 2018, re-opening at 8.45am on Wednesday 2 January 2019.

If you need to contact our Car Parks Office or Dog Warden service, please call our out of hours messaging service on 01243 785166 or 01243 534734. For any other district council related emergency, please call the Emergency Out of Hours number on 01243 785339.

If you have an enquiry about roads, pavements and street lighting or need to report a fault relating to them, you need to contact West Sussex County Council .

Our Chichester Careline  service, provided by the council, will continue to operate as usual over Christmas and New Year. The service operates 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year. It offers a variety of products and services to help people live safely and independently inside and outside your home. You can contact the team on 01243 778688.

You can also access a whole range of services on our website including:

Changes to bin collections over Christmas

There will be some changes to waste and recycling collection days over the Christmas and New Year period.  You can download and print your personalised waste, recycling and garden recycling collection dates. Simply enter your postcode or the first line of your address and press 'submit'.

However, for a quick reminder please see the schedule below. 

Normal collection day

Pre-Christmas week

Christmas week

New Year



New Year week

Return to normal collection day


Mon 17 Dec

Mon 24 Dec

Wed 2 Jan

Tue 8 Jan

Mon 14 Jan


Tue 18 Dec

Thu 27 Dec

Thu 3 Jan

Wed 9 Jan

Tue 15 Jan


Wed 19 Dec

Fri 28 Dec

Fri 4 Jan

Thu 10 Jan

Wed 16 Jan


Thu 20 Dec

Sat 29 Dec

Sat 5 Jan

Fri 11 Jan

Thu 17 Jan


Fri 21 Dec

Mon 31 Dec

Mon 7 Jan

Sat 12 Jan

Fri 18 Jan

Waste and recycling collection days will return to normal from Monday 14 January 2019.If you have any extra waste over the holiday period our collection crews will pick this up on your first collection after Christmas.

We can also accept any extra recycling that is left next to the burgundy household recycling bin, as long as it is kept clean, dry and loose. This is especially useful for all that extra glass and plastic recycling that we produce over Christmas, or cardboard that won't fit into the bin.

If you use the Garden Recycling Service, this will stop over the Christmas and New Year period from Friday 21 December. It will resume again on Monday 7 January 2019. You can recycle your real Christmas tree using the Garden Recycling Service.

There will also be some slight changes to clinical waste collections. All affected residents will be contact directly.

Christmas lights switch-on events

Communities have organised a whole host of activities across Chichester District to help get everyone in the festive spirit.


  • Christmas festivities: see the Christmas lights and watch the Rotary candlelight procession at the Cross in Chichester city centre on Saturday 24 November from 6pm.
  • Nutcracker Trail: follow the trail around Chichester city centre from 24 November and look out for Christmas street entertainment including the Snow Queen, live Christmas bands, roller skating presents, a dancing Christmas tree, and lots more.
  • Late night shopping: shops will be open until 8pm in the run up to Christmas on Thursday 29 November, 6, 13 and 20 December.
  • Christmas Market: browse a variety of stalls for locally made Christmas gifts and produce Saturday 8 - Sunday 18 December in East Street and North Street.

You can find out more information from the Chichester BID .


  • Selsey Christmas Lights and Lantern Parade: Saturday 24 November from 5pm in the High Street.

There will be festive fun for all the family with a marching band, Santa's sleigh, mini fun-fair, food stalls and late night shopping.

Find out more by contacting Selsey Town Council .


  • Midhurst Christmas street party: Friday 7 December from 6pm-8pm in Market Square and Midhurst Town Centre. There will be live music from local musicians, mini fairground rides, a Santa's Grotto, and the switching on of the Christmas tree lights.

Midhurst retailers will be open late for people to start their Christmas shopping and the cafes, pubs and restaurants will be serving food and drink.

Admission is free. For further information please contact Midhurst Town Council .


  • Christmas tree lights switch on event: Saturday 1 Decemberfrom 6pm in Market Square. There will be numerous Christmas market stalls to browse in Market Square, Leconfield Hall, Lombard Street and the High Street from 11am.

There will be live entertainment and music from singers, choirs and buskers. Father Christmas will visit and there will also be a live nativity and lantern procession from St Mary's Church to Market Square.

For more information, please contact Petworth Town Council .

Christmas at The Novium Museum

During the holiday season you can see the new Camera Club exhibition from 24 November, plus the museum's regular collections - all for free! Afterwards, enjoy refreshments in the café area and browse for gifts in the shop.

  • Father Christmas will be visiting the museum on Saturday 1, 8, 15, and 22 December, between 11am and 4pm. Book online at the Chichester Box Office . It costs £6 per child which includes a gift.

The Novium Museum  will be closed over the holidays from Monday 24 December to Wednesday 27 December, reopening Thursday 27 December.

Christmas Park and Ride

Spend more time shopping and socialising with our popular and free park and ride service. Thanks to support from Chichester College, the service will return on selected dates over the Christmas period starting on Saturday 1 December, 8.30am - 6pm.

This convenient service will run every 15 minutes leaving from Chichester College car park at Westgate and dropping off at:

  • Eastgate (opposite the Cattle Market car park);
  • Northgate (the lay-by in Oakland's); and
  • Chichester Cathedral.

The service will operate on:



Saturday 1 December

8.30am until 6pm

Sunday 2 December

9.30am until 5.30pm

Saturday 8 December

8.30am until 6pm

Sunday 9 December

9.30am until 5.30pm

Saturday 15 December

8.30am until 6pm

Sunday 16 December

9.30am until 5.30pm

Wednesday 19 December

8.30am until 6pm

Thursday 20 December

8.30am until 6pm

Friday 21 December

8.30am until 6pm

Saturday 22 December

8.30am until 6pm

Sunday 23 December

9.30am until 5.30pm

Monday 24 December

8.30am until 6pm

Festive farmers' markets in Chichester

Pop along to Chichester Farmers' Market on Friday 7 and 21 December for all your festive food and drink. Some stalls will even be taking pre-Christmas orders on turkey, meat and other produce. Please ask individual stallholders for more information.

Markets will resume after the Christmas break on Friday 18 January 2019.

Find out more about Chichester Farmers' Market on Facebook and Twitter .

Partygoers urged to 'look before you book'

If you're planning to eat out over the festive season, make sure you 'look before you book' and choose where to eat based on what is going on in the kitchen and not just what the menu contains. 

Each of Chichester District's food outlets, such as restaurants, takeaways and pubs, has a food hygiene rating. These range from zero (the worst) to five (the best). The rating is given following an inspection by Chichester District Council's Environmental Health Officers and is based on:

  • how hygienically food is handled;
  • the condition of the premises; and
  • how food safety is managed and documented.

The Food Hygiene Rating Scheme is a national initiative which has been developed by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) in partnership with local authorities. The aim of the Food Hygiene Rating Scheme is to reduce the one million cases of food poisoning suffered by people in the UK each year.

In the Chichester District nearly 1,500 businesses have been assessed and given a rating, which they are encouraged to display.

To find out the rating of the place you wish to eat you can check with the FSA  or download the free phone app.

You can also look out for the distinctive green and black food hygiene rating stickers that businesses in the Chichester District are encouraged to display in their windows.

Housing advice and homelessness

During the Christmas period you may be worried about the welfare of rough sleepers. We have a specialist Rough Sleeper Outreach Worker who works within the Housing Options team, and alongside the Community Safety team, to engage with rough sleepers in an attempt to support them back into accommodation.

If you are concerned about an individual rough sleeping, you can refer them via StreetLink . This referral will go to the Outreach Worker, who will attempt to verify the individual and assess their needs.

Chichester District also benefits from Stonepillow ; a registered charity providing a lifeline for homeless people with a drop-in day centre, and a 24 hour staffed hostel. This gives rough sleepers access to:

  • hot food and drinks;
  • shower and laundry facilities;
  • assistance with benefit claims and housing options;
  • a substance misuse worker;
  • a GP surgery; and
  • a needle exchange service.

You can find the day centre at The Old Glassworks, St Cyriacs, Chichester, PO19 1AJ.

Anyone of any age, gender, single or family; who is homeless, threatened with homelessness, or has insecure accommodation, can approach the Council for help and advice. We offer a housing advice drop-in service on: Tuesday, Thursday and Friday - 09:30am to 12:30pm and 14:00pm to 17.00pm, and Monday and Wednesday - 09:30am to 12:30pm.

Be winter ready

Winter weather can be harsh and unpredictable. Chichester District Council is encouraging residents to make sure that they are prepared for any bad weather that might occur over the coming months and consider the following advice:

  • Make sure your car is roadworthy by regularly checking oil and anti-freeze levels and tyre treads. It's also a good idea to carry a spade, blanket, map, torch, first aid kit, and emergency food and drink in the car.
  • Check screen wash levels and make sure the windscreen wipers and tyres are in good condition.
  • Defrost the windscreen and windows thoroughly before you drive.
  • Leave more time for your journey and drive slowly, leaving a good distance between your vehicle and the one in front.
  • Always carry your mobile phone with you and make sure it is fully charged.
  • If you are unfortunate enough to breakdown, ring your breakdown service and not the emergency services, unless you believe people are at risk.
  • Prepare alternative childcare arrangements in case of unexpected school closures.
  • Consider making alternative plans for your commute in case of severe weather.
  • Make regular checks on family, friends and neighbours who are more vulnerable, especially the elderly.

If waste or recycling collections are disrupted by snowy or icy conditions residents are asked to leave their bin out and our crews will get to it as soon as they can. We will also post updates here on our website,on Facebook and on Twitter .

If you have any questions about gritting the roads contact  West Sussex County Council - roads  which is responsible for gritting the primary routes throughout Sussex. Its website will provide information about travel disruption, school closures and gritting routes.

Flooding can be a concern across the district in the winter months. Check if you're at risk and sign up to receive free flood warnings  by calling 0345 988 1188.

People can also report flooding by calling the Environment Agency  Incident hotline on 0800 807060.

In the case of snow, there's no law stopping people from clearing snow and ice on the pavement outside their house or from public spaces. If you have cleared it carefully, it's unlikely you'll be sued or held legally responsible for any injuries on the path. Remember, people walking on snow and ice have responsibility to be careful themselves.

Try to clear the snow before it is walked upon as it is easier to clear loose snow before it becomes compacted. After clearing snow and ice, spread salt over the path to prevent refreezing. If the ice is impossible to clear, spread salt over the top to melt it.

In case of any emergencies this winter, you might also consider the following advice from some expert organisations:

  • consider having a flu jab;
  • keep well stocked with medications;
  • keep an extra stock of essential foods;
  • check your home heating;
  • record vital information in a non-electronic form;
  • check your water pipes are insulated;
  • make sure you know where your water stopcock is;
  • clear leaves from gutters and drains;
  • check for loose tiles; and
  • wear appropriate clothing and footwear when going out in bad weather.

You can also find more advice on winter readiness from the following organisations:

A helping hand from Chichester Wellbeing

Many of us set New Year's resolutions but find it difficult to start or stick to them - but help is at hand. Our Wellbeing  service is free, friendly, and impartial, and can help you reach your goals. It aims to help you improve your health and wellbeing through small lifestyle changes.

The New Year is traditionally a time when we all set ourselves a new goal, like losing some weight, giving up smoking, or getting more fit and active.

Our Wellbeing Advisors can help you work out how you can reach your goal, by making a few small changes which can help make a big difference. Through one-to-one appointments they can be there with you to help you stick to your target. The appointments can be made at a time and location to suit you and you can chat to our advisors over the phone as well.

The team can support people with:

  • healthy eating;
  • weight management;
  • becoming more active individually and as a family;
  • feeling happier and reducing stress;
  • reducing alcohol intake;
  • stopping smoking; and,
  • keeping warm and well by talking with our Home Energy Advisors who offer free home energy visits.

They can also signpost you to 'Move it and Lose it' weight loss workshops in the local area and introduce you to the First Steps to Fitness advisor who can help support you to be more active in ways that suit you.

For more information, or to book an appointment, please contact Chichester Wellbeing .

Don't give thieves a 'Merry Christmas'

Chichester District Community Safety Partnership and Community Wardens are reminding residents to be on their guard and not to leave presents and purses on show during the Christmas period. They are offering seasonal advice to prevent people falling victim to opportunist thieves who may target homes where gifts are left under the tree.

Advice for residents:

  • Put presents under the tree as close to Christmas Day as possible.
  • Make sure windows and doors are locked at all times, even if someone is at home.
  • Try not to leave presents on show in the car as this can act as an invitation to thieves.
  • Try not to put empty packaging outside the house for rubbish collections. Again, this can act as an advert to thieves about any expensive Christmas presents inside the house. Break boxes down smaller or make sure they are firmly inside the recycling bin away from prying eyes.
  • Make sure that purses and wallets are safely inside bags especially when you are out and about in busy shopping centres.

Stay safe this Christmas

With the Christmas party season about to enter full swing, Chichester District Council is urging everyone to have fun but stay safe by organising their journey home before enjoying their festive drinks.

Top tips to consider before using a taxi are:

  • book a licensed taxi or wait at an official rank;
  • make sure you have enough money for the expected cost of the journey;
  • try to stay with your friends and don't wait in unlit areas;
  • if possible, share a taxi with a friend;
  • look for a council identification plate on display, every licensed vehicle will have one;
  • check the driver is wearing his/her identification;
  • look for the driver and vehicle details on display inside the vehicle on the windscreen;
  • keep your mobile phone charged and with you at all times;
  • never get into an unmarked vehicle offering you a lift; and
  • don't get into a vehicle if you feel unsafe for any reason.

Our Licensing team has more taxi hire information for the public, and tips on taxis.