Santa’s Grotto

In light of the government’s most recent announcement, and the pandemics worsening position, we have with a very heavy heart decided to cancel our Christmas Grotto. 

The additional measures, threats of further restrictions and the moving legislation is at the heart of this decision as we believe it to be better to cancel at this stage rather than disappoint children in due course.

Please visit our website in December for a very special message video from Santa.

We will be refunding all bookings over the next week and contacting people directly in this regard.


No run up to Christmas is complete without a visit to Santa’s Grotto. The big guy can’t wait to meet all the children on his nice list and to treat them to an early present in the run up to the big day.

No child’s Christmas is complete without a visit to Santa, but as ever, keeping all of Poplar’s visitors safe is our top priority. The elves have been working hard to create a magical experience for every child that will be sure to make this year’s Christmas a special one. Our team have been supporting the North Pole crew to keep everyone safe by introducing a range of COVID-secure measures.

Tickets are £10 per child*, which includes:

A festive walk through our magical Christmas Wonderland leading to the Grotto, a meeting with Santa himself, one gift and one real mini Christmas tree per child*

Please read our Important Guidance and COVID-19 Safety, below, prior to booking. Please note we are only taking online bookings.

  • Adult:
  • Book My Space

Bring your family along to say hello to Santa in our spacious, socially distanced, Grotto – and enjoy our Magical Christmas Wonderland leading to the man himself for an extra touch of festive magic. As well as wonderful, warming memories of the day, each child will receive a gift and a real mini Christmas tree from Father Christmas and his elves.

Tickets are £10 per child, which includes:
  • A festive walk through our magical Christmas Wonderland leading to the Grotto
  • A meeting with Santa himself
  • One gift per child*
  • One real mini Christmas tree per child*

*Adults and babes in arms are free of charge and will not receive a gift from Santa, however if you do wish for your little one to receive a gift, you must purchase them a paid children’s ticket.

The elves will also be ready and on hand to take an official photo of your group with Father Christmas which you can purchase if you wish to commemorate the day in an extra-special way.

The grotto will open on Saturday 14th November and on Saturday and Sunday throughout the rest of November and early December – and then every day from 5th December until Christmas Eve – when, as I’m sure you can appreciate, Santa already has some important plans in the diary!

Fill in the above booking form, providing your party numbers, to view the events calendar, check availability and book your chosen date and time. More dates may become available at a later stage.

  • *Note that adults and babes in arms are free of charge and will not receive a gift from Santa, however if you do wish for your little one to receive a gift, you must purchase them a paid ticket.
  • Maximum group size is 6 people (of any age). Each group must contain at least 1 adult.
  • When booking, you will be prompted to indicate how many of each age group will be attending (i.e, adults, paying children, non-paying babies) – again, with a maximum of 6 people per group.
  • When booking, you will also be asked to select a time for your group’s meeting with Santa – note that the length of your session will differ depending on the number of children in your group (longer sessions for bigger groups) which may impact availability of timeslots.
  • Please ensure you arrive at the entrance to the Magical Christmas Wonderland promptly 15 minutes before your booked timeslot, to allow time to enjoy the festive walk on the way to meet the ‘man himself’.
  • Confirmation of your booking must be provided digitally or a printed version on arrival.

Keeping you, your little ones, and our staff safe is of course of the highest priority so we’re taking the following steps (in addition to our normal measures in store) to make sure your family can enjoy the magic, stress free.

  • In line with government legislation, adults and children over the age of 11 years old must wear a face covering whilst inside the store including within the Magical Christmas Wonderland and Grotto (please refer to legislation for exemptions).
  • Online booking is essential; this allows us to know and manage numbers at all times – and let Father Christmas know who is arriving and when!
    • This will also help us to manage queues, maintain social distancing measures and factor time for thorough cleaning between sessions
  • Maximum group size is 6 people (of any age) and all groups must contain at least one adult.
    • This is to allow sufficient space for social distancing in the grotto and plan numbers to brief Santa in advance!
  • We ask that you arrive at the entrance to the Magical Christmas Wonderland 15 minutes before your booked time – allowing plenty of time for you to check in and enjoy our magical Christmas Wonderland to top up with festive spirit before you meet Santa. This also allows us to manage social distancing measures between each group and keep everyone safe.
    • We recommend arriving earlier at Poplar to ensure you do not miss your timeslot– guests are asked to have a wander round the store, grab a coffee or wait in your vehicle if you prefer but please arrive promptly at the entrance to the Christmas Wonderland 15 minutes before your timeslot.
  • Temperature checks - to be safely admitted to the Grotto, employees and guests are asked to participate in a temperature check using a non-touch thermometer at check-in at the entrance to the Magical Christmas Wonderland. These non-invasive temperature checks are being applied as a condition of entry.
  • Anyone who is displaying a temperature above 37.8 degrees Celsius will unfortunately not be allowed to enter. In this event we will happily rebook your visit for another time (subject to availability) and at no additional cost or if there is no availability, we will offer a refund.
  • Visitors with certain health conditions and disabilities related to higher bodily temperatures should speak to the Poplar team upon booking and in advance of arrival at Poplar to ensure we can provide the correct assistance on an individual basis.
  • If you are showing any COVID-19 symptoms please do not visit Poplar – together we can help make our team, our community and loved ones stay safe.
  • Hand sanitiser stations will be placed around the building, as well as floor markers and instructional signage. Please make regular use of hand sanitiser, and heed all safety instructions, to help keep us all safe and socially distanced. Staff members will be on hand to guide you and answer any questions.
  • Confirmation of your booking must be provided digitally or a printed version on arrival; you will receive a booking confirmation email shortly after completing the online booking process with joining instructions.
    • This allows us to manage numbers (by ensuring only expected parties are present) and thereby maintain safety measures.