The Tale of the Trees
Chronicling the scenes and events at the 2013 Christmas Tree Festival
from the opening on Advent Sunday to the end of the week
Sunday, 1st December
The trees were lit for the Sunday morning Advent sung eucharist and parade service.
A Cub, assisted by Fr Paul Nener, lit the first candle on the Advent wreath.
Members of the congregation, young and old, brought up toys, to be distributed to needy local children at Christmas.
After communion, the uniformed organisations bore their flags out and it was time for the Festival proper to begin.
The first choral offering took place later that day, when 'a capella' choir Indigo Vibe sang to us.
Throughout that afternoon, the Jam Factory, cakes and handicraft stalls did steady business.
And the morning and the afternoon was the first day...
Monday 2nd December
Weekday lunchtimes featured appearances by choirs from local schools.
Today's songsters were St Mary's College senior choir, who entertained us with traditional carols.
Music of quite another kind was provided from time to time by Rick Walker,
whose home-built busker's pipe organ belted out medleys of seasonal music at the turn of a handle,
drawing curious onlookers to the Lady Chapel during his turns. The first of a succession of classes
from nearby Waterloo Primary School came in in a very long crocodile to wonder at the trees,
while others enjoyed the refreshments on sale at the back of church.
Tuesday 3rd December
The Christmas Tree Festival settled down into its weekday routine. Rick Walker continued to draw
crowds to his busker's organ, letting children turn the big wheel and pump out the festive medleys.
St John's C of E primary school sang sweetly for us at lunchtime,
and a steady stream of visitors inspected the trees and the many good causes,
none more than the forces support tree, with its poignant photographs of members
of the armed forces killed in action. As the lights went down at the close,
trees on the altar platforms highlighted the golden reredos behind
Wednesday 5th December
Today was the busiest day of the week, and buzzing with activity,
especially at lunchtime, when we were treated to two school choirs in the space of an hour.
A large contingent of small children from Waterloo Primary School gave an unexpected and delightful performance.
Then the somewhat larger children of Merchant Taylors' Stanfield Choir performed.
As with all the school contingents, they stayed on for a while to put their offerings in the collection buckets for their chosen trees,
and to cluster round the busking organ. Then quiet returned for a while before the decks were cleared for the carol service
with our popular military band filled the church for the separate evening session.
Wednesday evening, 3rd December
A highlight of the Festival in recent years has been the appearance of a military band to lead the singing at our carol service.
The evening is staged under the auspices of St Faith's Services Support Group, which meets monthly
to pray for and hear about our armed forces on active service, especially those serving in Afghanistan.
Let by Padre George Perera, a full church again enjoyed a session of carol singing, readings and prayers.
The stirring music was provided by the Lancashire Artillery Volunteers Band, conducted by WO1 I.L.Mitchell
Thursday 5th December
With more than half the week gone, the pattern was repeated on the fifth day.
It was the turn of the choir of Merchant Taylors' Junior Boys' School to provide the entertainment at lunchtime.
More classes from Waterloo Primary School also called in, being especially busy around the prayer tree,
where young and old wrote their petitions and hung them on its branches.
One class also sang for us, amid the sparkle of the trees
Friday 6th December
The day saw the continuing procession of visitors young and old, to be fed, watered and sold things
by the usual suspects. Children enjoyed exploring the farthest reaches of the church, including parking two at a time
in the big President's chair. Today we stayed open late, and the evening's highlight was a lovely carol concert
by the St Nicholas Singers, under Michael Foy, and all sporting silly hats.
Saturday 7th December
The final session of the 2013 Christmas Tree Festival ran from 10.00 am - 4.00 pm.
Business was steady throughout the day, but especially buzzing at lunchtime. The young musicians of
the Liverpool Saturday Morning Music School, regular performers at our Saturday lunchtime concert season
throughout the summer, turned out in force to perform a stirring programme of music, with talented soloists
and a huge brass sound. The church was full once again, then later the last few hours until the final lights out passed quietly,
with the busking organ again in play - and three generations behind the jewellery stall
Photos by Chris Price
Click on the links below for the rest of the story
The festival schedule page
The build-up page
The aftermath pages
The Visitors' Book and the Prayeer Tree
The trees index page (this and all past years)