Themes from around the world light up Bedford church during Christmas Tree Festival

Concert during Christmas Tree Festival at St Paul's Church. Picture: Ann Collett-White
Concert during Christmas Tree Festival at St Paul's Church. Picture: Ann Collett-White

Almost 70 Christmas trees with themes from around the world will go on display at St Paul’s Church in Bedford.

The 68 trees have been decorated by local groups, charities, schools and businesses and are part of the Christmas Tree Festival which runs from Wednesday, December 5 until Monday, December 10, 10am to 5pm, and noon to 4pm on Sunday.

The festival is in aid of the Bedford Hospitals Charity, as well as the church, and school and community choirs will sing, dance and ring handbells.

A festival concert will be held on Friday, December 7 at 7.30pm featuring members of the Philharmonia Orchestra. A string sextet will play works by Brahms, Gershwin, Cole Porter and others. Tickets at £16 inlude mulled wine and mince pies available on 01234 340163/783181.

The festival will be opened by Bedfordshire’s Lord Lieutenant Helen Nellis, in the presence of local dignitaries, at 10.45am on December 5. Admission to the festival is £2.50, under 16s free. Call 01234 340163 and visit https://bedfordhospitalcharity.org.uk/treefest

Festival organisers are calling on amateur photographers to help the event sparkle by recording its very best moments. Those who best capture ‘the Spirit of the Festival’ will win prizes to view productions at the town’s Quarry Theatre and screenings at the new Vue cinema with interval drinks or buckets of popcorn included.

Photographs may reflect any aspect of the festival - the opening ceremony, the Christmas trees and decorations, lights, flowers, candles, the choirs, the many visitors, anything that best sums up this ‘Spirit.’

Photographs will be judged at the end of the festival and all prize winners, including those nominated for commended and highly commended certificates, will be notified before Christmas.

For more information on the festival and full details of how to enter the Photographic Competition, visit the Festival website at http://www.christmastreefestivals.org/bedford/