A PACKED church greeted the opening of Rusper’s Christmas Tree Festival by John Bird.
Rector Nick Flint welcomed the veteran satirist, who recalled one of his acting roles as a bishop in ‘Emmerdale’ and over mulled wine and mince pies villagers and others enjoyed the spectacle of many creatively and imaginatively decorated trees reflecting the interests of local pubs, businesses and voluntary groups.
Rusper School’s ‘Boy Bishop’, ten year old James Sutcliffe, offered a special prayer for the occasion. The church remains open for the remainder of week for viewing of the trees.
Souvenir brochures are available for a donation and the proceeds will support the village church and an educational trust working with Palestinian orphans.
The climax of the event will be a service of readings and carols on Sunday December 18 at 4pm.