Support available during the holidays

20 December 2022
Door with wreath

This time of year can be tough for everyone, and Cyrenians is committed to making sure everyone has the support they need this holiday, so you can feel safe knowing where to turn in a crisis.

The majority of our services will be closed from 19th December to 4 January, but some essential services will keep running at reduced capacity over the holidays - check below for details on what's available when.

Cyrenians support services 

Over Christmas and New Year, Cyrenians will be running on reduced capacity due to public holidays. This will affect most services from Monday the 19th of December to Wednesday the 4th of January. Some services will be open during this time – see below for details.   

Cook school  

The cook school will be closed from the 16th of December until the 9th of January, during which time Crisis will be using our facilities to prepare hot Christmas meals for those who need them. 


Homeless Navigators will be working in Edinburgh until Friday December 23rd, and will return on Wednesday 4th January. Our Community Link Worker will be available until the 23rd and returning on the 9th of January.

Housing First support will be available throughout, but will operate on an emergencies-only basis on the week in between Christmas and New Year. 

HMP Addiewell Visitor Centre 

The Addiewell Visitor Centre’s Christmas opening hours are:  

  • Christmas Eve: 9:30 – 16:00  
  • Xmas Day: Closed 
  • Boxing Day: Closed 
  • 27th Dec: Closed 
  • 28th – 30th Dec: 1:00pm – 8:30pm             
  • 31st Dec: 9:30am – 4:00pm   

The Visitor Centre will then be closed till the 3rd of January, and will reopen on the 4th of January at normal working hours. 

FareShare Depot 

The Depot, and associated services, will be open as usual the week running up to Christmas, but closed from Christmas Eve to Tuesday 27th December.  

There will be a reduced service running from Wednesday 28th to Friday 30th, during which time the Depot will be open from 8am to 2pm, and services will close again for the New Year until January 4th. 

Recovery services 

For detailed information on Edinburgh Recovery Activities during the festive period, check the ERA Facebook. LEAP residential services will be provided as normal for those currently staying. 

Support for older people in West Lothian  

OPAL clients matched with volunteers will continue to receive phone calls or befriending visits over the festive period. 

The OPAL office will close at 5pm on Thursday 22nd December. Staff will be reachable by phone or email on December 23rd, 9am-1pm, and December 28th and 29th from 9am-3pm. Full service will resume on Wednesday 4th January. 

Activity groups will be running until 22nd December and return on 4th January (contact the office for individual group dates). Puzzle packs are also available during the month of December, which include puzzles, tips for staying well, recipes and more. For more OPAL festive fun, connect with our OPAL Advent Calendar daily to see what is behind each door! 


The Community Hospital Gardens at the Royal Edinburgh Hospital and Midlothian Community Hospital are open to visitors, but will be unstaffed from 20th December to 9th January.  

The Walled Garden at Dollar Park is open until 3:30 PM on Friday 23rd December, and will then be closed until Wednesday 4th January.  

Falkirk services 

Our Employability and Community Connection services will be closed from the 16th, with the exception of Justice Employability and Justice Outreach, which are open until Tuesday 20th, the Community Links Service, which will be available until the 22nd, and justice work in the Garden, which will continue until the 23rd. 

All Falkirk services will return as normal on January 4th, with the exception of Camelon Connect, which is coming to an end from 31st December. 

We hope you are able to stay safe and warm during the holidays, and have a joyous Hanukkah, a merry Christmas and a happy Hogmanay.