Thousands of people joined together at the weekend to mark the start of the festive season at Thorpe Hall Hospice’s annual Lights of Love event.
The Lights of Love appeal backed by the Mercury, has so far raised over £5,000, making it the ‘best ever’ result for the annual Christmas campaign, which this year was opened to the public to help the hospice in its bid to raise £6m for a new state-of -the-art building.
To celebrate the success, people from across the area packed the grounds of the hospice in Longthorpe, Peterborough on Sunday, to enjoy an open air carol concert and celebratory fireworks.
The centrepiece of the event was the hospice’s 12ft Lights of Love Christmas tree, which by the end of the event was adorned with hundreds of baubles inscribed with personal messages and memories.
Hospice fundraiser and event organiser Kirsty Clipston said: “As ever Lights of Love proved extremely popular and it was wonderful to welcome so many familiar faces – and some new ones – to Thorpe Hall.”
James and Dylan Duell, featured in last week’s Mercury, also attended the event with their family, to remember their mum who was cared for at the hospice, and to bring in the money they had raised at school.
On the night crowds enjoyed an evening of entertainment from Peterborough Voices and the Peterborough Concert Band, accompanied by guests singing carols.
Peterborough Community Gospel Choir also took to the stage and young bagpipe player, Kathryn Johnston played a ‘beautiful’ rendition of Amazing Grace, followed by the firework finale.
There was also a number of fundraising stalls and festive delights on offer, along with a special visit from Santa for the younger guests.
Kirsty added: “As ever the generosity of people across the region is inspiring – thank you from everyone at the hospice.”
Staff at Stamford Hospital have also been involved with this year’s Lights of Love campaign by hosting a Lights of Love tree in the main entrance of the hospital.
For more information on Lights of Love or the Thorpe Hall campaign visit www.thorpehall.org.