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When Fashion Detective met Matt Cardle – and a Winter Wonderland 2011 review, Hyde Park

Have you all fainted? I do hope so. Yes, tonight I came face to (reddened and over-excited) face with X Factor winner Matt Cardle. And where did this auspicious meeting take place? Only at Winter Wonderland, Hyde Park’s annual festive ding dong…

I’ve always wanted to go to this event, but was a Wonderland virgin until last night. It was a sneaky peek launch party with a sea of journalists and well known peeps in faux fur coats and lipgloss. As well as Mr. Cardle ‘slebs in attendance included Zane Lowe (who we were all “is it or isn’t it?” over when he took a pod next to ours on the big wheel, but post-ride he shouted “who wants a sausage?” to his kiddies in an unmistakable Zane way and the deal was sealed), Tara Palmer Tomkinson, Anneka Rice (looking foxy!), Donna Air and Nicola McLean (who maybe thinks I’m stalking her).

I’m big on Crimbo and expected to love Winter Wonderland. I did. It’s got big rides, beer, picturesque market stalls, mulled wine, more beer, ice skating, torpedo-like German sausages, a massive wheel, hot cider, Santa’s grotto, a circus, more beer…you get the picture.

And talking of pictures, here’s a few we took, to give you the gist. (Winter Wonderland is open to all from November 18th 2011 to 3rd January 2012 – if you like Christmas you will absolutely love it, promise.)

Prepare for fun – and white knuckles
You can stuff your faces all night with the sweetest treats

Big ass cookies get the message across
Mulled wine and a mince pie in the gorgeously atmospheric Spiegel Saloon
There’s a lot of German sausage-based action going on
It would have been rude not to get my mouth around a big ‘furter
You can get up close with some cute and familiar characters

And run away from others…
(It talks. Terrifying.)
I’m not sure I’ll ever be the same again after this super-fast ride.
I needed a drink afterwards to steady my nerves – so this was my kinda carousel
Mini Fashion Detective had an important letter to post
And I had some beautiful decorations for the tree to buy

Having a go of the “just like real snow” fake snow
If you drink lots of this….
…you won’t get one of these
The big wheel is a massive draw
Views are spectacular
It’s starting to look a lot like Christmas…

Written by Johanna Payton