Published: 09 December 2019

Christmas on campus

The lead-up to Christmas is always an exciting time, and it’s no more so than right here at Surrey. Festivities have been in full swing on campus so far in the month of December, so we’ve put together a list of activities and events that we’ve recently taken part in to show you how we like to celebrate the holidays. ’Tis the season to be jolly after all!

Christmas lights on campus

Santa Moves

Following the success of our Santa Moves charity event last year, we decided to spread Christmas cheer all throughout campus again this year. Open to all students and staff at the University, the event involves a 2k run/walk through Stag Hill, all dressed as the big man himself, Santa Claus.

For £5 participants got a free Santa suit to keep, with all proceeds going to Shooting Star Chase, a charity that cares for young people with life-limiting conditions.


Students taking part in Santa Moves on campus

Bauble painting

Staff and students took part in a crafty bauble decorating session to add their own personal touches to the MySurrey Hive Christmas tree. It also featured a fun competitive element, in which people could enter to win prizes for the best-decorated baubles. The fun continued back in the office with our marketing team painting a range of colourful decorations of their own in a lunchtime craft workshop.

Christmas decorations painted in a lunchtime craft workshop

Lucky postcards

We hid 375 gift-wrapped postcards in different locations around campus for students to find and exchange for a surprise gift. Those lucky enough to find one won from a range of items including a brand new laptop, Amazon vouchers, Tesco vouchers, Spotify memberships and much, much more.

Lucky postcards hidden around campus

University Orchestra Carol Service

The annual University Orchestra Carol Service is one of the highlights of our festive calendar. We celebrate the arrival of Christmas with a traditional service in the magnificent setting of Guildford Cathedral. The congregation have the opportunity to raise the rafters in singing some of the best-loved Christmas carols, with the Department of Music and Media’s very own Professor Jeremy Barham playing the organ.

University Orchestra Carol Service

A Christmas Carol

This festive season, Guilford School of Acting brought us Dickens’ best-known story, A Christmas Carol, in a spectacular adaptation featuring an uplifting score by Alan Menken renowned for his film scores for Walt Disney Studios with Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and The Little Mermaid.

Winter Wonderland

This December, Surrey headed to the ultimate Christmas destination - Winter Wonderland at London’s Hyde Park. Organised by the Students’ Union, students got the chance to immerse themselves in all things festive and have a great time.

Guildford Leos’ Christmas Market

Our weekly Thursday food and drink market adopted a festive twist thanks to the Guildford Leos, our very own student volunteering society. People joined in for a brilliant day filled with festive food, games, gifts and more to raise money for the Number Five Project, a homeless shelter based in Guildford.

Guildford Leos Christmas Market

Challengers’ December Fest

The Challengers’ December Fest was a fantastic student-run charity event which got everyone into the spirit of winter with lots of festive drinks, games, a Christmas raffle, a ski lodge photo corner and more. The night’s proceeds went to Guildford-based charity, Challengers.


Surrey celebrated the start of the holiday season in the best way possible, with live music, Christmas lights, carol singing, festive food, mulled wine and more at the MySurrey WinterFest event for a day of festive fun on campus.

Students singing Christmas carols outside MySurrey Hive

Activities in Guildford

Guildford and the surrounding area also host a number of festive activities throughout the months of November and December. Here are just a few events that are worth going to.

Students in Guildford town centre at Christmas

Christmas lights switch-on

The festive season this year was launched with crowds gathering on 21 November to see Guildford’s cobbled streets illuminated. If you’re a local, be sure to pop into town to see the pretty lights while browsing the shops and grabbing a bite to eat or a drink.  

Christmas lights and fireworks in Guildford

Glow 2019 at Wisley

From 7 December to 5 January RHS Garden Wisley will be putting on a spectacular botanical-inspired lights show themed around the four seasons. As you wander around the trail you’ll be in awe of all the fantastical flowers which light your way.

Glow at Wisley

Discover more festive fun events on campus, including what student life at Surrey is like.

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