Wednesday, 19 January 2022

Advent windows trail begins

Advent windows trail begins

THE Wargrave Advent window trail is now open.

Windows throughout the village are being decorated in a festive way and families can visit one location per day during December or go to see them all on Christmas Eve.

More than 50 homes, businesses and places of interest are taking part.

Patricia Vella, who has organised the event for the second year, said: “I thought it would be particularly important for everyone to have something Christmassy to look at as they walked around the village.

“I love all the bold, colourful displays that make you smile, the works of art and the pictures done by children. For me, a big part of the charm is the variety.” 

The trail was started in 2011 by Judith Stephenson-Hodges, who has lived in Wargrave for more than 45 years. She said: “I got the idea from a village in North Yorkshire called Askrigg, which is where my daughter-in-law comes from.”

She appealed to villagers to take part in the first trail via Wargrave News.

Mrs Stephenson-Hodges said: “People were so interested in the advent windows and that’s how it started.

“We live on the high street and people didn’t tend to walk our way and look in the windows, which is why I stopped organising it.”

Among those participating are Matthias and Emma Winker, who live in Spring Walk with their children, Thea, five, and Oskar, two.

Their display features intricate wooden decorations made by Mr Winker’s father, Matthew. He said: “My father was so passionate about making Christmas crafts. He was originally from Nonnenroth in Germany, but unfortunately passed away in 2017, aged 67. He used to visit us at least three times a year.

“We have three wise men, Christmas trees and stars. These decorations are so special as he hand-made them. It’s like having a part of him here.

“I think the Advent trail is a really lovely idea for people walking around the village.

“Christmas is such a great time. Nights are getting darker, so it’s nice to have something to enjoy.

“My mother, Elizabeth, is still living in Germany. We are not sure if she is allowed into the country due to the recent covid restrictions, which is hard for us all.”

Denise Askew and her daughters, Betty, 17, Jem, 15, and Holly, 13, have a display at their home in Victoria Road. Mrs Askew said: “We do a Halloween display and Patricia, who organises the trail, said we should do the Christmas one too, so we have for the last couple of years.

“We love seeing all the other residents joining in.”

Marian Skinner, also of Victoria Road, has made a display of Santas.

She said: “I’ve been joining in for about 10 years now. Whenever I visit a Christmas market, I buy a new figurine for the collection in the window. Most of these Santas come from all over Europe.”

The venues are as follows (by day): 1. 161 Victoria Road and 45 Purfield Drive; 2. 57 Purfield Drive; 3. 160 Victoria Road and Wargrave Guides and Rangers @ The Hair Company, High Street; 4. 60 Victoria Road; 5. The Copse Christmas Extravaganza (2pm to 8pm), 12 Spring Walk and 130 Victoria Road; 6. 9 Kings Acre and 14 Spring Walk; 7. 31 Highfield Park (6pm mince pies and mulled wine); 8. Our Lady of Peace Church and 1 East View Close; 9. 4 Silverdale Road; 10. Robert Piggott Junior School, School Hill; 11. 27 Purfield Drive and 1st Wargrave Scouts @ 26 Purfield Drive; 12. 63 High Street, Beech House, Blakes Lane and Wargrave Brownies @ 116 Victoria Road; 13. 6 Beverley Gardens and Rainbows @ 1 Newalls Rise; 14. 6 Langhams Way and Wargrave Beavers @ H’artisan, 69 High Street; 15. 7 The Ridgeway and Wargrave Cubs @ 1 Clifton Rise; 16. 24, 26, 28 and 30 High Street; 17. 89 The Ridgeway; 18. 7 Dunnock Way; 19. 65 High Street; 20. 37 Braybrooke Road and 36 Purfield Drive; 21. The Mount, School Hill and Cuzza Wallah @ 51 Fidler’s Walk; 22. 172 Victoria Road and 12 Beverley Gardens; 23. 38 Highfield Park; 24. St Mary’s Church crib.

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