6th December

The Dutch get a head start on Christmas as today is St Nicholas’ Day, the Patron Saint of Children and their version of Father Christmas -St Nicholas/Sintaclaus. Traditionally he arrives in the Netherlands by boat (the event is televised) and is accompanied by his (now contraversial) assistant Black Peter (a medieval page in blackface)..

26th. December - Boxing Day.

The day when the poor boxes in churches were emptied following the Christmas services, and the alms distributed to the poor of the parish.

Traditionally also the day from which Pantomimes coukl be held (although pantos can now be found well before and after Christmas) and nowadays also the start of the non-online Christmas sales!.