Ukrainian families celebrate 'bittersweet' first Christmas in UK since fleeing war

  • Video report by ITV Meridian reporter Natalie Verney

Ukrainian families living in Reading are celebrating their festive traditions as they spend their first Christmas away from home.

Many were forced to flee the war and settle into life in a different country, with a different language and new traditions.

Although many still have relatives living and fighting in Ukraine, this event was a chance for them to momentarily be embraced by the magic of Christmas.

Tatiana Rumineseva is a Ukrainian refugee and mother who says this year has been really challenging for all the family

In Ukraine, they traditionally celebrate the St Nicholas on 19 September, who is very similar to Father Christmas as we know it.

He gives out presents to the children who have been good - and coal to those who haven't.

Sometimes, he gives out a twig to naughty children, to symbolise them turning over a new leaf.

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