Fakenham flower festival is awash with imagination

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Fakenham Salvation Army’s second Charity Flower Festival was awash with items such as lobster pots, sea shells, a lifebelt, foul weather clothing, sea-to-shore radio telephone, a miniature beach hut and a deckchair.

The theme was Harvest of the Sea and 12 charities and a group of Salvation Army youngsters responded in an imaginative manner.

The children made a mural depicting the parable of the Loaves and Fishes whilst the Wells RNLI display was a reminder of both the ferocity of the sea and the abundance of food it can also provide.

Especially poignant were two charities set up to commemorate local youngsters who never had a chance to experience life as grown-ups. One was Ellie’s Love.

Her grandmother, Betty Loades, was on hand to tell the story of her brave granddaughter from Colkirk. She died two years ago at the age of 16 from Cystic Fibrosis.

Another display was that of Rebecca’s Wishes, dedicated to the memory of Rebecca Fairhead, who died of a brain tumour at the age of 12, 10 years ago.

She knew she was going to die, impressed everyone with her bravery, and pledged her savings of £250 to the charity being set up in her name.

She said before she died that she wanted to help children in her position to make the most of their short lives.

Sally Army member Christine Vertigan said: “This is the second year of our festival.

“We tried it last year to celebrate 130 years of the Salvation Army. It went so well we decided to do it again.

“We don’t do it to make a profit, we do it to benefit local charities.”

The festival was organised by Ruth Woodhouse and other charities involved were 
Barnardo’s, The Norfolk Hospice, Cancer Research UK, Taverham’s Oak Farm Clinic – a neurological rehab clinic, Friends of Cranmer House, the British Heart Foundation, Hesabu Baraha and the Craig Prior memorial Fund.

The festival ran from Thursday to Saturday last week.

“We’ve had a steady flow of visitors and on Thursday we were absolutely packed,” said Mrs Vertigan.

“We decided to include Thursday market day this 
year to help the charities more.”