The amazing annual Brighstone Christmas Tree Festival kicks off this Thursday (December 8th, 2011) and continues right through to Sunday (December 11th) with other Christmassy activities on offer in the village too, including a Christmas Market outside Brighstone Village Shop.
Over 100 decorated trees will be on show this year and as usual they will be sprinkled between Brighstone Parish Church, Brighstone Methodist Church, the Wilberforce Hall and the pretty little parish church at Mottistone. It’s great fun for kids and adults alike, with some traditional, some modern, some weird and many wonderfully decorated trees to see. Walk around and compare your favourites with your friends or family, and there are always good ideas for your own tree at home.
The festival kicks off at 7pm on Wednesday December 7th at Brighstone Parish Church when the Hospice Tree Lighting ‘Lights of Love’ and carol service remembers those who have shared our Christmases in the past. Then the official launch of this twinkling tinsel filled festival happens the next day at 3.30pm with the lighting of the ‘Tree of Christian Unity’ by The High Sheriff of the Isle of Wight, Susie Sheldon and there are carols with Chale Choir and Brighstone Schoolchildren at the Methodist Church.
On Friday December 9th from 10am to 4pm there will be a Christmas Gift and Craft Fair at the Scout Centre (behind the Wilberforce Hall) followed by carols with ‘The Village Society’ at the Wilberforce Hall at 4pm.
Saturday December 10th heralds the Brighstone School Christmas Fair from 1pm till 4pm at the School and there are carols and crib blessing at 4.30pm at Mottistone Church
Sunday December 11th is a feast of music with ‘Rhymes & Chimes of Christmas’ at 2,30pm and the Stars of Wonder Concert, a musical concert full of festive flavour and variety in aid of Island charity ‘Love Russia’ at 7pm, both at Brighstone Parish Church.
These trees make a wonderful spectacle and raise a lot of money for local and national charities, with optional collections being made at each venue, and many trees stay on show at the various locations right up until Christmas Day.
And if you want to order your Christmas provisions there will be a Christmas Market outside Brighstone Village shop on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday where you can order your turkey and ham from Hamilton’s Butchers and pick both up from the shop before Christmas if you wish. Your smoked salmon and other fishy needs can be purchased from Phillips Sea Foods, delicious local cheeses from the Isle of Wight Cheese Company, bread from two local bakeries and ready made meals and soups from The Village Kitchen, run by Dave Hollis of Brighstone Village Shop along with their lovely fresh vegetables.