Christmas Tree Festival 2023
This year it will be our 18th Christmas Tree Festival there will be as in past years 60 trees in the church together with the larger Remembrance Tree. All the trees will be decorated by local individuals, families, schools, businesses, or groups and organisations.
The festival commences on Saturday 2nd December and will be open the three weekends up to Christmas. Saturdays 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sundays 12 noon – 5 p.m. The church can also be opened by arrangement for groups during the week.
During the event there will be hot drinks and mince pies available in the annexe. There will also be a raffle for the specially made Christmas Cake.
Admission will continue to be £2.00 per person and accompanied children under 12 will be free. The proceeds will be in aid of Church funds, with a donation being given to the Mary Ann Evans Hospice.
This Festival is enjoyed by all ages, starting with the “Wow” factor when entering the church with all the lights on. We are sure that our tree decorators will come up with equally imaginative titles and varied displays as in past years.
Jess & Richard Arrowsmith with Jo Maher will be returning again this year as part of their Christmas tour on Friday 8that 7.30 p.m. They will be performing a concert of traditional English songs and music with many Christmas carols. This lively concert is really well received each year. Tickets £12 please book with Pat Arrowsmith 024 7639 2555.
There will be the traditional trees that we have each year e.g. the Poppy Tree and The Remembrance Tree, where visitors can put the names of loved ones on a star and make a donation toward churchyard grass cutting which costs over £4,500 each year. In the vestry there will be the Prayer Tree and the opportunity to light a candle.
Other than the trees, there are again a selection of Christmas and winter displays in windows and suspended from arches and ceilings. As in previous years, there will be a crib on the altar to remind all of us that the gift to mankind of the baby Jesus is the true meaning of Christmas.
On Sunday 10th there will be a Christingle service with donations to the Children’s Society. Everyone will be given a Christingle during the service and use back at home.
The festival will finish with the traditional Nine Lessons and Carols service at 6.30 p.m. on Sunday 17th When we will have a few moments just before the service with just the lights from the trees.
The trees will remain in the church until after Christmas so will be in situ for the Communion service on Christmas morning at 10.30 a.m.
Photos and report of previous festivals
A member of the congregation wrote a poem for the Carol Service which finished the Christmas Tree Festival. This so sums up this year’s event.
Oh what a terrible year we’ve just had
And perhaps next year won’t be quite so bad
With prophets of doom saying covid is here
Don’t procrastinate, vaccinate and so there’s no fear.
Our lives might have changed, of that we’re quite sure
But life must go on although there’s no cure,
And now it’s near Christmas when good friends may call
When Mary’s babe Jesus came down for us all.
A time for humility, caring and love
In the way of our Lord who came from above.
Lets reach out to others it isn’t so hard.
Perhaps with a visit, a letter or card.
I know he’s beside me as I walk through each day.
No need to worry all I do is just pray.
Lets enjoy this Christmas with its trees and its lights
With carols good food and cool starry nights.
Remember the story of Jesus Christ’s birth
A true son of God came to bring peace on earth.
Spring round the corner will bring warmth and new life,
With peace and joy and good health and less strife.
Let us journey through faith in a life that’s worth living
Helping less fortunate with love, care and giving.
May God bless us all as we go on our way,
With hope in our hearts for another good day.
RWT December 2021
With God’s good grace we have had a wonderful festival, every effort was made to keep people safe and follow the Government changing guidelines applicable during the festival.
So many people were pleased that it was taking place and went to an enormous amount of trouble to decorate their respective trees.
Unfortunately the concert with Jess Jo & Richard had to be called off as the pandemic worsened.
However the children of Nursery Hill Primary School and ARC School Ansley were able to hold their end of term carol service in the church, although their parents were not able to attend.
Every effort was made to keep people safe, unfortunately it did mean that the numbers in the Annexe had to be reduced and a few people made use of the take-aways that we provided.
Decorators and visitors alike were so pleased to be able to come back to the church and partake in the festival. This was clearly demonstrated by comments received both verbally and written in the visitor’s book.
By the end of the event a total of £1907 had been raised of which £190.70 has been sent to the Mary Anne Evans Hospice and a further £75.90 given to the churchyard fund from the Remembrance Tree stars.
Thank you to the many people involved in putting this event together, providing support during it and clearing up at the end.