Fen-Edge Christmas Tree Festival branches out to reach the community
Creativity, community and Christmas hope come together at the Fen-Edge Christmas Tree Festival, which takes place this weekend (December 2-3) at the parish church of All Saints’, Landbeach.
Come along and laugh at themed trees like ‘Watt the Dickens’ and ‘Pan-Tree’. Reflect on ‘Love’s Pure Light’ or ‘T(recycled)’, one of several eco entries using repurposed materials.
Vote for your favourite, enjoy seasonal refreshments and music, including carol singing at 6pm on the first Sunday of Advent (December 3).
The Friends of All Saints’ Church Landbeach (FOALS), who set up the event, utilise the historic church as a community resource.
Angela Brown, a FOALS team member, said: “Like the best tree-growth, this event is rooted in community. Fen Edge villages are going to need to reach out and across, as forest tree root-systems do, to survive and benefit as our communities expand with all the new developments in and around our villages.
“We hope that our seasonal refreshments, fun and traditional Christmas events will provide warmth and light for the heart – as well as the stunning visuals of the Christmas trees themselves.”
Jane Oakes, another keen participant and a lay pioneer minister, added: “We are a very small congregation and this is an opportunity of sharing our wonderful church with others and hopefully them receiving a bit of extra love as they visit.”
Handbells feature in the above photographs, to signify that bell-ringers also network like tree routes – and send signals.
Some distant ringers offered Landbeach a set of 100-year-old handbells and these will be played at the Friday night gala dinner which precedes the festival.
Originally, the dinner was also to toast the arrival of some new bells for the church tower but the arrival of these has been delayed.
The bell-ringers know, however, that on Saturday, April 27, 2024, they will chime in with Cambridge’s St Augustine’s Choir in a specially-composed piece for choir and bells.
Dagmar, Bishop of Huntingdon, will formally dedicate the bells on April 28 at a special service.
Those displaying trees – or visiting – this weekend are asked to park at the village hall due to ongoing roadworks.
All are welcome. Entrance is £2.50 for adults, while under-16s get in free. There is also disability access.