"Once there were four children whose names were Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy."
This year we bring the beloved tale The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis to life in the 2023 Fenwick Christmas Window.
Follow along as Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy tumble out of the wardrobe into Narnia. There, they embark on a fantastical adventure with Aslan and Mr. Tumnus through the land of eternal snow and ice that has been enchanted by the White Witch. A place where there is “Always winter but never Christmas.”
“Our Christmas windows have long celebrated the importance of storytelling,” says Mia Fenwick, Chief Marketing Officer at Fenwick.
“The Chronicles of Narnia fantasy series, imagined by C.S. Lewis, brings together readers of all ages, inviting them into the enchanted land filled with mesmerising characters. Which teach us all about courage, kindness, family, and the thrill of adventure. We’re thrilled to celebrate the joy of reading once again by bringing the classic Chronicles of Narnia to Newcastle and to viewers tuning in from our global Fenwick community.”
The journey through Fenwick Christmas Window begins with Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy discovering a mysterious wardrobe and stepping through into the snow-covered forest. In the next window, we see some of the favourite characters making an appearance including Mr Tumnus who shows Lucy around frozen Narnia. The story takes a dark turn as Edmund is captured by the White Witch and taken to her frozen palace. While dining with the Beavers, Edmunds's siblings realise that he is missing and set off on a dangerous journey to rescue him.
On their quest, they meet Father Christmas who gives them each a gift: "These are your presents," was the answer, "and they are tools, not toys. The time to use them is perhaps near at hand. Bear them well." In the last two windows, the siblings find Aslan and defeat the White Witch. The display concludes with everyone in Narnia coming together for a grand celebration as Christmas is restored after 100 years.
“We are really excited this year to create and share the story of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe," says Head of Creative, Paul Baptiste.
"It’s been a joy to explore the fantastical world containing such amazing characters, wonderful scenery, and incredible storytelling to create a window to remember, featuring a few special surprises.”
To further translate the pages of the book to our windows, we once again teamed up with The Glasshouse International Centre for Music, to provide a specially created soundtrack for the festive window. The music was carefully arranged by Newcastle-based conductor, Timothy Burke and performed by The Glasshouse’s community choir, Voices of the River’s Edge and orchestra Royal Northern Sinfonia.
“We’re so proud to be making the music again this year for Fenwick’s Christmas window to add that extra bit of festive sparkle,” Abigail Pogson, Managing Director of The Glasshouse International Centre for Music, said.
“The window is a real North East institution and it seems only fitting that the music was made right here by local musicians.
“We carefully created the music to fit with the window’s wintry, whimsical theme. What makes this year even more special is that it has brought together our community choir of young people, Voices of the River’s Edge, with our world-class professional orchestra, Royal Northern Sinfonia. Because that’s what we’re all about, bringing people who are passionate about music together.
“Fenwick’s Christmas window is always a real collective coming together for the region and we’re delighted once again to be a part of it.”
The fantastical world of Narnia was unveiled in front of a small number of invited guests, including children and families from Fenwick’s partner schools, hospitals and charities as well as the Christmas Window Reveal competition winners.
Re-watch the moment now, down below and bring the tale of Narnia home with our exclusive limited edition copy of the book and festive bauble, available here.
The windows can be viewed from 6 November through to early January 2024.