When is Christmas day 2022, and what is the exact date? How was the date chosen in the UK?

What day is Christmas this year? Christmas is the time for many people to give and receive gifts. This holiday celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ, but how did this holiday come about, and what are the Christmas traditions in England?

Christmas Day 2022: What day will it be?

Christmas is almost upon us, and you can sense its spirit everywhere – in the very air, the mouthwatering smell of grog, and the pleasant crunch of wrapping paper, used to pack the first gifts for relatives and friends. Whether it’s Christmas wreaths, candles, or decorations, Flowwow knows how to put a smile on someone’s face and exert a holiday spirit. In this article, let’s remind ourselves what day of the week Christmas is this year, what long-forgotten traditions lead to it, and what can be done to get into the Christmas spirit.

Christmas Bank Holidays 2022

This year the Christmas date falls on a Sunday, which means that we are getting a pleasant addition of a substitute day, Tuesday 27th, to the Christmas 2022 holidays season. Get excited about a four-day rest, starting with the Christmas weekend and continuing into Bank Holidays on 26th – Boxing Day – and 27th.

Why is Christmas Day Celebrated on December 25th?

It is probably worth mentioning that December 25th (or January 6th, according to the Julian calendar) is a rather arbitrary date, calculated long after the birth, death and ascension of Jesus Christ.

By the early-to-mid fourth century, the Western Christian Church placed Christmas Day on December 25th. This date was chosen because it, as Christians believe, is exactly nine months after Jesus’s immaculate conception on March 25th. December 25th might have also been chosen because of the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year.

In early AD, Christians did not celebrate the birthday of Jesus Christ at all. For them, the mere fact of the Messiah’s birth was enough, and there was simply no tradition among the Jews to celebrate this date back then either. Much more important for the Christian world was epiphany day when Jesus shared his divinity with humankind. Epiphany was celebrated on January 6th according to the Julian calendar and was highly revered by Christians.

Then came the amalgamation of pagan and Christian traditions. At the end of December, Romans honoured Saturn: magnificent saturnalias were arranged during the winter solstice, and it was also the date of Mithra’s birthday (deity of the Sun). When at the beginning of the IV century Emperor Constantine ceased the persecution of Christians, the church merged its canons with pagan ones, announcing the Nativity of Jesus as the birth of the true sun, the Son of God.

History and symbols

The history of this holiday is known to the whole world and refers us to the beginning of our era, when in a barn, among placid animals, in a manger, a newborn baby was lying, called to save the whole world and bring true love and kindness into our lives.

The original symbolism of the holiday is associated with the following image: a manger, soft white lambs, and a bright salient Christmas star. Another important symbol is an angel announcing the birth of Christ with a copper pipe in their hands.

A list of symbols was later elaborated with a Christmas wreath, a type of calendar that was originally supposed to stand on the table throughout December. There were four large candles and twenty-eight small ones on the wreath: every day from December 1st, you lit a small candle, and every Sunday, a large candle. So for Christmas, the entire wreath was supposed to gleam with the candle fire.

Today, these canonical symbols have been partially replaced by simpler, everyday ones: fragrant mulled wine, a gleaming fireplace, colourful Christmas stockings that Santa Claus fills with gifts, and gently falling snow, the loveliest weather for building a snowman. 

Christmas Day traditions

The birth of Christ has become a symbol of love, respect, and care for others; that’s why the main tradition of this day is to spend time with loved ones, without arguments or resentment, in an atmosphere of mutual understanding and tenderness. It’s time to start thinking about a festive family gathering and sending out invitations to relatives and friends.

This holiday’s absolute staples are a beautifully set table with roast turkey, chestnuts and homemade pies, England’s most beloved Christmas food.

Another equally important element of the holiday is Christmas decorations. Lots of light – candles as well as lamps – wreaths and garlands of mistletoe and fir tree, Christmas stockings by a gleaming fireplace and, of course, a gorgeous Christmas tree.

Is Christmas Day a Public Holiday?

In the UK, Christmas Day is a bank holiday, an official day off when schools, shops, and most businesses are closed. Some places, however, still might work short hours. 

What People Do on This Holiday

Between a delicious hearty meal and gift-gifting for Christmas, it is customary in the UK to see friends, spend time with children outside, play snowballs and visit the ice rink. Many people go skiing or ice-fishing for the Christmas holidays.

Do not forget about social activities and events: Christmas is the time for charity fairs, fundraisings, and other ways of helping those who have found themselves in a challenging life situation.

Christmas Day in Other Countries

Christians share Christmas celebrating traditions: this is a holiday for a cosy evening with the family, a festive church service for those who practice, and a quiet peaceful dinner, open for all. 

In Europe, it is customary to give gifts for Christmas – not only to children but to everyone you love.

Also, Christmas is known as a holiday with the most whimsical local traditions. In Mexico, instead of a Christmas tree, people decorate a palm tree (this is actually very close to the canonical interpretation of Christmas since Jesus was born in the hot African desert); in Panama, they burn a scarecrow that symbolises the evil forces, and in Italy, people get rid of unnecessary things and joyfully buy new ones.

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve has all the rights of being considered a separate holiday, although officially it is still a working day. December 24th is the last day you can buy the missing gifts and goodies for the Christmas table, wrap the presents in fancy paper, tidy up the house and finally fully devote yourself to the peaceful, warm atmosphere of the kindest holiday of the year.

Christmas Date Ideas

Okay, most Brits spend Christmas with their families – but what about the rest? Christmas is a very romantic holiday, which many single young people choose as the day for their first date.

What can you do on a Christmas date? Look at some of these Christmas couple ideas:

  • Go ice skating together. Fragrant hot mulled wine and a walk down memory lane of your favourite childhood activity are what you need in the first hours together.
  • Make a pie. What’s Christmas without delicious homemade food? You can invite your date over and make cinnamon rolls or blueberry pie in four hands.
  • Listen to a street concert. It’s a good idea to stroll through the holiday bazaar and dance around the big Christmas tree to the romantic sounds of a live Christmas concert.