Family Events

Elizabeth Ilive: A Woman Ahead of Her Time Exhibition

Petworth House and Park, Petworth

Until Tuesday January 1

Normal admission applies

This interactive exhibition explores the remarkable achievements of a pioneering woman who lived at Petworth House from the 1780s. Discover more about Elizabeth Ilive’s scientific endeavours with a reimagining of the laboratory she developed at Petworth House.

Phone 01798 342207 or visit

Skeletal: The Scaffold of Life

Booth Museum, 194 Dyke Road, Brighton

Friday September 7-Wednesday January 23


This display by photographer Tim France shows images of rare and unusual specimens from the museums’ extensive collection of skulls. Picture: Tim France.

Phone 0300 029 0900 or visit

Sleeping Beauty by Rufus Norris

Chichester Festival Theatre, Oaklands Park, Chichester 
Saturday-Sunday December 15-30, 2pm and 7pm

Tickets from £10. Suitable for ages 7+.
Chichester Festival Youth Theatre perform this classic tale based on The Sleeping Beauty in the Woods
by Charles Perrault. A princess under a fairy’s curse pricks her finger on a spindle and sleeps for a hundred years, waiting to be woken by a prince’s kiss. But hold on a moment. There’s a distinctly different slant to this story. The princess is beautiful and spirited but there are two princes and a lot of threatening thorns. As for the fairy who caused all the trouble in the first place – well, putting things right isn’t as simple as casting another spell. Rufus Norris’s splendidly entertaining and mischievous version of the original fairy tale ventures beyond the usual ‘happy ever after’ ending with the prince and princess united. The course of true love never did run smooth – especially if your mother-in-law is an ogress with an unfortunate taste for human flesh… Rufus Norris’s version of Sleeping Beauty premiered at the Young Vic (2002). He is director of the National Theatre. There will be a relaxed performance of Sleeping Beauty at 2pm on Sunday December 30.

Read our feature on this year’s Chichester Festival programme.

Phone 01243 781312 or visit

Nellie Limelight and the Oysters of Time

Theatre Royal, New Road, Brighton

Sunday December 16-Wednesday January 2, various times

Tickets £12. Age 4-7

Something fishy is occurring… When Nellie Limelight stumbles across something in the wrong place and the wrong time, she sets out to investigate. Follow the intrepid detective as she endeavours to put things right, and on the way find the answer to some of life’s great questions:  What happens when a glow worm loses its glow? Who’s really in charge of the weather? And what’s an oyster’s favourite song? Nellie attempts to solve her most peculiar case to date in this funny, surprising, seasonal adventure around Theatre Royal Brighton.

Phone 0844 871 7650 or visit

The Animals & Children Took To The Streets

The Old Market, 11a Upper Market Street, Hove

Wednesday December 19-Saturday January 12 except January 1, 7.30pm with 2.30pm matinees on Saturdays, 2.30pm on Sundays

Tickets premium £23, £27 and £29.50/standard £18, £22 and £24.50/on the door +£2/TOM’s Friends 15% off. Age 12+

This show by the award-winning theatre company 1927 is a theatrical journey of startling originality. Welcome to the Bayou, a part of the city feared and loathed wherein lies the infamous Bayou Mansions; a sprawling stinking tenement block, where curtain-twitchers and peeping-toms live side by side, and the wolf is always at the door. When Agnes Eaves and her daughter arrive late one night, does it signal hope in this hopeless place, or has the real horror only just begun? Seamlessly synchronising live music, performance and storytelling with stunning films and animation, this is the wickedly twisted international hit tale from the multiple award-winning company behind Golem and The Magic Flute.

Phone 01273 201801 or visit

Mischief and Mystery in Moomin Valley

The Old Market, 11a Upper Market Street, Hove

Thursday-Monday December 20-31, 10.30am and 12pm/no performances on Tuesday and Wednesday December 25 and 26

Tickets £8.50. Age 3-7

Discover a world where anything is possible! Be sure to pack your imagination and join us on an unforgettable journey to Moomin Valley, where everyone is welcome, nature thrives and adventures are plentiful. Magical puppetry, an ingenious pop-up book set, original music and interactive play will delight young audiences and encourage them to immerse themselves in a unique participatory story-telling. Expect snow, surprises and plenty of Moomin mischief!

Phone 01273 201801 or visit

ROH: The Nutcracker (12A)

Connaught Theatre, Union Place, Worthing

Wednesday December 26, 2pm

Tickets £15.50 and £14.50/senior, student and child 14 and under £14.50 and £13.50

The Nutcracker is broadcast live from the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden, featuring music by Tchaikovsky. It’s a magical adventure on Christmas Eve for Clara and her Nutcracker doll. Their journey to the Land of Sweets brings with it some of the most familiar of all ballet moments, such as the Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy and the Waltz of the Flowers. Peter Wright’s production for The Royal Ballet keeps true to the spirit of this Russian ballet classic, with period details and dancing snowflakes. 

Phone 01903 206206 or visit

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