Around 50 Christmas trees are on display at St John’s Golden Church in Kensington this December, helping to spread some Christmas cheer.
The glittering display is the result of carefully decorated trees by local community groups, including Northland Down Syndrome Support Group, Boy Scouts and the local Lions club to name a few.
The annual event has returned after a break last year due to Covid-19 restrictions, and co-ordinators of the event are excited to see it return.
Diane Pennington, one of the co-ordinators, said those involved are reached through a contact list, and the aim is to spread the “message of Christmas, and provide something for families that doesn’t involve money ... it’s something that’s doable for families”.
“Another lovely part of it is we often have people coming and playing music or singing or anything spontaneously, so we often have singing, and dancing and the piano out here.”
Reverend Freddy De Alwis said the initiative gives “all the organisations and community groups an opportunity to come here”.
He said anyone is welcome to come along, and on Sundays are welcome to “come and join” the worship, “or they can go and walk around”.
A space specifically set up for children has been made in the church too, where they can decorate a Christmas tree, draw and play.
“Parents can sort of go in and sit in at the church or the children’s place,” he said.
“One of the new things we’re trying this year is we’re having a craft time for children, so kids and come in and do colouring, etc,” said Pennington.
The ‘Festival of Christmas Trees’ is open daily from 10am-1pm, as well as 6.30pm-9.30pm from December 1-24.
There are also free craft sessions for children every Wednesday which run from 6.30pm-7.30pm.