IT will be a festive festival first for St Faith’s Church at Gaywood this year.
The Anglican and Methodist church in Gayton Road is to stage its first Christmas tree festival at the end of November and organisers have been given an original painting to be the prize in a raffle.
Well-known Gaywood artist Helena Anderson has donated her watercolour painting of the rarely shown southern side of the church in a winter landscape.
Mrs Anderson said: “I have always loved St Faith’s Church. It is a beautiful building which has been the subject for art students in the tuition classes I used to run at Gaywood Arts Centre. I think a Christmas tree festival is a lovely idea and I wish it every success.”
More than 20 trees will be on show, each one illuminated and decorated by church groups and Gaywood schools. Admission to the festival will be free.
It is due to be officially opened by Sir Jeremy Bagge, of Stradsett Hall, during a launch party on November 29. West Norfolk’s borough mayor and mayoress are also due to attend.
Church warden Richard Parr, one of the organisers, said: “Although many other churches in Norfolk now stage Christmas tree festivals, we hope that by including some in different mediums, such as wool, paper sculpture and wood, our display will be that little bit different.”
As part of the festival, from November 29 until December 3, two concerts are being staged.
On November 30 there is to be a variety concert and the Bishop of Lynn, the Rt Rev Jonathan Meyrick, is among singers and musicians due to take part.
Fans of Festival Too will recall Bishop Jonathan’s memorable performance of The Troggs’ hit Wild Thing in Lynn’s King Staithe Square this summer. One of Lynn’s well-known leading ladies on the amateur stage, Amanda Arterton, is also set to take part in the show.
On the evening of December 1, King’s Lynn Town Band is due to give a concert and as December 2 will be the first Sunday in Advent, a special service is planned.
St Faith’s team rector, Canon Beryl Wood, said the Christmas tree festival was a new and exciting venture for the parish and she hoped that not only church members but people from the wider community would want to embrace and celebrate the event.
She said: “We have been encouraged by those wanting to be involved and by generous donations from people like Helena Anderson.”