TINSEL AND FINS?
Text by David Marshall
Photographs by Sue and David Marshall
This year, 2009, the Christmas Tree Festival at St. Peter &
St. Paul's Church, Pickering (North Yorkshire) was held against
the backdrop of the heaviest snowfalls Pickering had seen for
many years. As you will see this created a 'photographers paradise'
This year the Festival ran from Friday 11th to Tuesday 29th
December. I decided to create a theme of 'tinsel and fins' for
this years display. As the 25 fish disc ornaments from 2008
remained intact these would be used to form the basis of the
display. Master Paul Story (the Grandson of our Chairman - Mr.
Henry Hallsworth) used painted egg box segments to create 12
ornaments of his own while Miss Amy Charters answered our request
for ornaments from our 'twinned' Society, STAMPS, by creating
disc ornaments showing a Silver Shark and a Schubert's Golden
Wednesday 9th December marked Christmas Tree Festival decorating
day! I was on my own for the morning decorating session, 10.00a.m.
to 12noon, and chosen a very sturdy looking tree. I made a rough
placement of the ornaments during this time.
Sue was able to join me for the full afternoon session, 2.15p.m.
to 4.15p.m,and with ornaments and lights placed upon the tree
the fins part of the job was nearly complete. For the tinsel
aspect we placed these streamers around the tree base - along
with information sheets about Ryedale A.S. and a blown-up Betta
photograph as a background feature. Committee Member Mrs. Elizabeth
Skellington came along to lend support. After school Paul was
able to come along, in the company of his Mum Tracy, and place
his ornaments to complete the fins section. By the time we left
the tree was just as I had envisaged.
Elizabeth with David at the Ryedale
Sue and I returned for the final session, 6.00p.m. to 8.00p.m.,
and checked that everything was okay.
David with the completed tree
Our tree was one of 29 decorated by local hobby groups, local
educational providers, local service providers and Christian
groups. Spread out from the large entrance area, throughout
the Church to the altar they created a beautiful display that
complimented the famous Mediaeval wall paintings and formed
a feeling of peace and humility. Well done for all the work
put into the tree decorating by all concerned. It was lovely
to see people of all age groups taking part during the different
sessions. Now I know why Roy Wood said 'I wish it could be Christmas
The entrance to the Festival
The British Legion Tree, to remember
young men of the Pickering area lost in recent conflicts,
was placed close to the Quaker Church Peace Tree
The Festival was officially opened, on Friday 11th December,
with a selection of carols, traditional seasonal songs, organ
recitals and readings put together by that wonderful choral
group that go by the name of the Chanticleer Singers. Sue and
I represented the Society and thoroughly enjoyed this evening.
As the singers took their deserved applause the Church was darkened
and the trees lit.
Sue and I returned on Tuesday 22nd December and this allowed
us to take the Festival photographs that follow.
Although the Festival is all about friendship and community
I have to confess that I was 'chuffed to bits' with all the
lovely comments made about our tree by 'locals' who visited
the Festival this year.
A last look at our Tree