The Winter Forest

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The Winter Forest

Exchange Square is getting a Nordic makeover, transforming into an enchanted winter forest as the frosty months set in. Cosy up and watch festive flicks in a Tipi Cinema (£15), book a private feast at The Hideaway or simply indulge in something sparkling, spiced and seasonal at the Bar & Grill. Find out more here


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Average User Rating

3.8 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:2
  • 4 star:3
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:1
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From their website, this looked great so myself and a friend looked into going and even seeing a film at the Tipi cinema, we did leave it quite late to book so wasn't sure if we would be able to still get tickets. The website would only allow us to purchase one so we assumed this meant that was all that was left. I contacted the venue via Facebook  and they said they would find out and get back to me. By the following morning when I still hadn't heard anything, we assumed there were no tickets available and decided to go along to visit the market anyway. This was a Sunday we had snow and the weather wasn't great, so I checked the website and social media to see if the market had been closed.. nothing on there. So I made the journey which took me over an hour and met my friend, on my way there, the venue contacted me to say that there was only one ticket left for the film, this was just an hour before the film was due to start! When we arrived it looked suspiciously quiet and as we got closer we saw that everything was closed! As you can imagine, not too impressed that we had travelled in the snow, wasted time and money AND had been in contact with the venue, who didn't mention anything about the closure. I contacted the venue to let them know what happened and as an apology they offered myself and my friend a free drink and meal at the bar and grill. I asked them when the market would be open and they informed me of all the dates it was open up until January 12th. So last week, myself and my friend returned.... guess what... it was all closed!! Apart from the bar and grill so we showed the staff our message and they said "oh the kitchen is closed because of the weather and there isn't really any atmosphere so we have asked to close early" They said we could come back another time to claim our meal but neither of us live nor work near here and I wasn't prepared to go back a 3rd time! Incredibly frustrating and would give a minus star if possible, it takes about 30 seconds to just put a message on social media to inform customers that you are closing! Really poor service!


This is definitely a classy addition to the Christmas market scene with 100s of beautiful Christmas trees, tipis and chalets selling good quality food and drink. Unfortunately on the Sunday we visited the chalets were all closed however we were there for the showing of Elf in their tipi cinema. There is no other word to describe it tham magical. A small tipi, only a small amount of comfy bean bags with popcorn and soft drink included in the price. It made for a really lovely Sunday :). I will definitely be back next year so fingers crossed they do it again!


My favourite festive pop up this year. It's a bit hidden, which is great, it has real trees, mini German market (with one stall selling excellent curds with flavours like pina-colada and hot cider for only £2.5!) a bar with grilled foods, average priced hot alcohols and bookable tables. But the best part is the cinema in the tipi! Looking tiny from the outside it's actually not that small. It's warm and comfy and you get a soft drink and stale pop corn in the price of the ticket. It's perfect place for a lazy evening if you want to feel the Christmas spirit for a bit longer this year, but I have to agree with the guys below that the screams and shouts coming from the bar can be annoying at times. 


The Winter Forest really gets you in the mood for Christmas, with lots of snowy trees, mulled wine and fairy lights. I attended to go to the Tipi Cinema to watch Love Actually which was good value for £15 a ticket (includes free popcorn and a drink) but they could rethink the show timings as at about 10pm, halfway through the film, the other Tipi housing the bar turned in to a very loud drunk singalong which made everyone laugh but ruining the atmosphere a little! Other than that, a lovely festive evening out. 


I really loved it here. It definitely made me feel Christmasy and it definitely did feel like I was lost in a Winter Forest. I loved the fairy lights and decor and LOVED that they used real trees, I wanted to box up the smell and take it home with me. The prices for drinks were a bit much (£6 for a coffee cup of mulled wine/cider) but the Christmasy atmosphere, the decor and the smell is what makes it worth going. 


Christmas trees, snow, mulled wine and tipis- this is what to expect at Exchange Square this Christmas. Walk the Christmas tree catwalk and enter snowy paradise at this fantastic pop up. I loved that all the trees are real as they give the whole place an authentic smell and you're placed into the heart of a snowy Christmas day from the off. The mulled wine was £6 which was a little bit steep but it was oh so tasty. Full of spicy aromas, this lovely drink warmed me through and was the perfect thing to sip on under a tipi covered in fairy lights.