YOU ARE HERE NOW / The Alternative Christmas Gift

If you’re racking your brains trying to think of a gift with a difference…

Here’s our round up of fun alternatives to novelty socks, cheap perfume and wall-to-wall stationery sets.

With chocolate making workshops that reveal the tricks of the trade, and plenty of opportunities to snack on confectionery, The Chocolatician in Shoreham is a fantastic way to learn about the wackier side of being a master chocolatier. The big question is, can you resist the opportunity to try and craft your own Cumberbunny?

How about treating the budding barista in your life to one of Small Batch’s courses at their official coffee training lab? You will have to schlep to Seven Dials, but for the truly lazy there’s a home brew course (lab coat not included).

Cinema vouchers are the ideal present for movie buffs, and there’s no better way to support great independent cinema than with gift vouchers for the Dome. Alternatively, £20 will buy you a year’s membership at the fabulous Cellar Arts club or £35 for Friends of Worthing Theatres.

If you dream of re-enacting Tom Cruise’s finest acting moments in Cocktail, then a masterclass at The Rocking Horse could be the ticket. At £19.50pp with a minimum group of six, this is the perfect way to start 2019 in style.

Make Nancy Drew proud and pick up a Worthing murder mystery trail from Seven pounds is all that stands between you and your finest Famous Five moments. Ginger beer optional.

You can legitimately offer to show someone your etchings if you book onto Wendy Barratt’s art courses at the Drawing Room. Our pick has to be the fantastic-sounding long pose sessions with models cast in Game of Thrones, Bladerunner or Ingres-inspired postures.

Get your creative juices flowing with a gift voucher from Art-Ful on Rowlands Road. They run monthly arty evenings with added tea and cake for £5, or bring a bottle and a takeaway to a private session and really get stuck in.

Soar like an eagle (okay, more like a buzzard) over the South Downs with a paragliding session at Air Sports based at Shoreham airport. They hope to get you flying solo by the end of your first lesson!

If all this commercial consumption leaves you cold, remember there’s always a simpler (and cheaper!) way to give. How about nominating a business that’s meant something to you for the Sunny Worthing awards? Buy a marble for the Share the Warmth scheme (most places will accept a donation of 50p). Smile at the next person you see once you’ve finished reading this, or pay them a compliment. You never know, it might change someone’s day.

Still stuck for a present? How about the ultimate gift of a limited (to as many as we can sell) edition Here & Now tote bag? Make sure you always have stuff that matters on you (plus it’s the perfect size for your copy of H&N). Check them out here!

Zoe Rhodes