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The Most Weird and Wonderful Christmas Gifts Received by our Lumo customers

From a trip to a muddy farm to a bag of old grubby make-up: here are some of the most weird and wonderful Christmas gifts our customers have received.

Published 25 Dec 2023

As we all start returning home for the festive period, customers travelling with Lumo, the Newcastle based train operatorshared some of the most weird and wonderful Christmas gifts.

This year the average person in the UK is set to spend £26.7bn collectively on Christmas gifts[1].

As expected, perfume, clothes, gadgets and food were all unveiled as the most popular Christmas gifts in the UK in a recent study[2]. However, customers on a local Lumo service shared their most bizarre gift giving experiences reminding us that the most memorable presents are often priceless.  

The Most Weird and Wonderful Christmas Gifts


1. Toilet roll

“One time, my mam got me toilet roll for Christmas. To be fair, I’d not given her any steer of what I actually wanted, but it’s not what I’d have suggested if I’d been more organised. A top of the range coffee machine might have got me a bit more excited! It was a monthly subscription and I should have been more grateful at the time – I had no idea just how handy it would become! A few months later we went into lockdown and, while no-one could buy toilet roll because the shelves were empty, I was all stocked up. It was the most useful gift ever. Turns out Mams really do know best!” - Derek Jones aged 36

2. A picnic and the doctors

“My family once gifted my dad a picnic on Christmas Day - and we gave up our sit-down three course meal to eat it with him. It’s not the sort of gift you write on your Christmas list, but we knew it would be what he wanted. My dad was working at the hospital as an out of hours GP that Christmas and we didn’t want him to miss out on the family all being together. So, we took a festive picnic to the hospital and had it with him there.

My dad was so thankful that we made the effort to be there with him when he was dedicating his day to be there for others!  We do trimmings well in our house, so giving up on these wasn’t easy, but it ended up being a really special day. It was certainly a different way of doing things, but it was well worth it!” - Georgia Haynes aged 22

3. A letter from Scrooge

My mate decided to ‘gift’ me the ultimate practical joke one Christmas. It all started the day after I’d put my decorations up outside, I got a letter of complaint through my door from the neighbours, saying they weren’t happy with how they looked, and that my lights were ‘too bright and were reflecting in their windows’. I wasn’t happy and was gutted that my festive efforts weren’t being appreciated. I took to Facebook to give the anonymous Scrooge a piece of my mind, calling people ‘Bah Humbugs’. It wasn’t until Christmas Eve at the pub, when he asked me if I got my ‘gift’, that I found out the letter was from him winding me up! I think the real gift there was how funny he found my rantings. We’ve laughed about it every year since” - Jim Leith aged 62


4. A bag of grubby used make-up

“One of my aunties once gave me a bag full of old, used make-up. I had no words! I’m still hoping she got that mixed up! I’m all for helping the planet by giving pre-owned gifts, but this one took it a little bit too far… pre-owned dresses, or passed down trinkets can make a gorgeous gift, but there are just some items that should only ever have one owner. Thank goodness she wasn’t there when I opened it, I don’t know how I would have hidden my reaction! - Ellen Buckley aged 19


5. A trip to a smelly farm to milk a cow

“My mum and dad took me to the smelly farm for Christmas, and it ended in tears. I think most girls my age were opening Barbie’s Dream House and skipping ropes, and then there was me in a cold wet field in my muddy wellies.  Everyone thought it was a really weird gift to receive, but to be honest, when I was a little girl, I used to really want to milk a cow, so they did make my weird childhood dream come true. I was SO excited, only to learn the cows were actually milked by machines, which really dampened my Christmas spirit.” - Anna Lisa aged 39