by Suzanne Reid
A large number of Cuckfield’s residents and many from further afield enjoyed the Christmas Tree Festival at Holy Trinity Church on the weekend of 12th-14th December. For the last twelve years committee members, well supported by a small army of other volunteers, have taken time out of their normal lives to bring us the spectacle of a church packed with Christmas trees.
The committee’s aim is simple: bring the whole Cuckfield community together and, whilst we are enjoying one another’s company, raise some money for charity. For many years now the Independent State, who organise the Street Festival, have liaised with the Christmas Tree Festival committee to give the village a unique start to the festive season.
The 2014 festival raised £5,200 for the Kent, Sussex and Surrey Air Ambulance; the charity that helps to save lives. They decorated their tree with yellow and red helicopters. The Singing Allsorts brought the year’s poppy theme to Cuckfield with a stunning display of large poppies. The tree covered in Paddington Bears proved highly popular with the younger visitors and many were highly amused by the Bell Ringers’ Bats in the Belfry. Visitors to the bell loft over the weekend didn’t complain, so we must assume that the bats in question were kind enough to stay on the tree.
For the committee, a few of whom have served the full twelve years, the organisation of the festival begins in January and culminates in a week of frenzied activity where furniture is moved, trees are installed, decorated and removed and the whole church cleaned and refurnished afterwards.
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