SHHHH! Kent’s biggest Christmas secret revealed

Have you ever wondered why The Historic Dockyard Chatham closes every December?

For over 400 years, Dockyard workers, past and present, have been keeping a heavily
guarded secret. For the first time this Christmas, Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust (CHDT)
has been granted special permission to reveal this classified information.

On selected dates between Saturday 26 November until Saturday 24 December join a
magical, interactive journey into Santa’s substation, hidden deep in the Historic Dockyard
and uncover the secrets of how every child is found each Christmas Eve.

Mission Christmas is a brand new Christmas experience unique to The Historic Dockyard
Chatham. The family friendly experience, created within the historic Mast Houses and Mould
Loft, takes children into a secret location used by Father Christmas, his reindeer and his
elves as a navigation centre to plot the locations of any child not at home on Christmas Eve.
Father Christmas will task children with a special mission to make sure each “good” child
receives their Christmas gift on the most important night of the year.

CHDT would like to warn those wishing to enter the secret substation that it’s heavily
protected by magic. Only those with true Christmas spirit will be permitted through the gates.
In addition to the Mission Christmas experience the Mess Deck Restaurant will be open,
serving festive food and drinks. The shop will be stocked with Christmas gifts and handmade
products from the Master Ropemakers.

Olivia Horner, Commercial Director, Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust said: “We are very
excited to be opening The Historic Dockyard Chatham this Christmas. We have developed a
brand new, unique experience for families to come together and enjoy during the festive
period. The Dockyard has been a secret substation for Father Christmas for over four
centuries and, after much consultation with the man himself, he has granted us special
permission to share this big secret for the first time this year.”

For further information and to book tickets see
Please note: The Historic Dockyard Chatham, including its ships, galleries and exhibitions,
will not be open to the public during December. Visitors will only be able to experience the
“Mission Christmas” event. Mission Christmas is a separately ticketed event and not
included in an annual ticket.