Helping you to get the most out of our region

Winter Wonderland

6th November 2021

Those clever little elves have been beavering away again at family-run Gates Garden Centre on the edge of Rutland, setting up a magical wonderland to delight one and all. Clare Rudd-Jones went along to get into the Christmas spirit…

Christmas just isn’t Christmas without a trip to Gates – in fact, it’s the perfect way to kick off the festive season and really get into the spirit of things. This year, the heart-warming concepts of celebration and family reunion seem more poignant than ever, and for many people the lift that the anticipation of the festive period provides is very much needed. 

At Gates, you can browse an incredible 14,000 square feet of decorations and displays, where Santa’s little helpers have come up with 10 creative decorative themes to inspire and entice you, from traditional to ethereal to glam. There are gorgeous decorated trees, colourful moving displays and row upon row of treats and gifts to delight adults and children alike! 

There’s everything to decorate your home this Christmas. There’s a vast range of trees – artificial (both natural and pre-lit) and real (available towards the end of November – pre-order or buy in store), gorgeous Christmas wreaths and garlands. There’s an incredible choice of dining- and tableware, crackers, festive lighting, candles and lanterns, throws and cushions. Then there are decorations for Christmas, plus cards and wrapping paper and bags, too. 

A highlight for many at Gates is the lit village (from Lemax), decorative musical and mechanical collectible village miniatures for Christmas – perfect for building a collection and always popular with the kids. 

And, of course, there’s an extensive gifts department, of homewares, toiletries, clothing, and, of course, the fantastic, big toy department, which features favourite brands including Lego, Playmobil, Schleich, Barbie and Jellycat. So easy to tick everyone off the Christmas gift list!

And when you’re all shopped out and in need of refreshments, or if you need a rest mid-shop, you can enjoy festive dining by the cosy log burners in the Garden Restaurant (autumn/winter menu and festive options on the specials board) and Courtyard Coffee Shop. Call in to the fabulous farm shop before you leave, too, to stock up on locally sourced food and artisan products for your guests. 

Catering to all your festive needs, it most certainly is a winter wonderland. Perfect for all the family.

Festive tree themes 2021

  • Botanical Peacock
  • Candy Cane Lane
  • Enchanted Forest
  • Feathered Friends
  • Frosted Glam
  • Frosty Morning
  • Polar Ice
  • Traditional Christmas
  • Vintage Pearl
  • Woodland Creatures


Usual opening times

Mon–Sat 8am–5.30pm, Sun 10am–4pm (open earlier for browsing)

Special Christmas opening times:

Late-night opening on Wed in December 

1, 8, 15, 22 December 8am–8pm

24 Dec 8am–4pm

25, 26, 27 Dec and 1 Jan Closed

28, 29, 30, 31 Dec and 2 Jan 10am–4pm (open earlier for browsing on 2 Jan)

3 Jan 9am–5pm

4 Jan 8am–5pm (business as usual)

Somerby Road, Cold Overton, Oakham, LE15 7QB, 01664 454309,

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