A host of angels took residence inside St Mary’s Church, Higham Ferrers between 17 – 19 November, alongside stalls and refreshments for visitors. All proceeds went towards the St Mary’s 600 Appeal which is raising money for the restoration of the Bede House.
Individuals, groups and companies from the local community were invited to create their own angels to exhibit with free reign over the design. 60 displays were installed in the church including individual angels, some within a scene and some as individual characters. Each display had its own story and these created thought-provoking and meaningful conversations both amongst the groups taking part and those visiting.
Around 1700 people attended the Angel Festival and were invited to vote for their favourite angel. Prizes were awarded to the top three with Higham Ferrers Nursery and Infant School claiming first prize for their beautifully colourful angel wings.
The event proved a great success raising £15,000 for the St Mary’s 600 Appeal but the success was not only financial. The joy of this event was the bringing together of the local community, some who may never have been into our buildings before, to share their stories and make connections. This is being furthered still by the sharing of photos and videos of the event on social media.
As Revd Louise Bishop from St Mary’s said, ‘the winners of the Angel Festival overall were all of us. An amazing team effort in a fabulous town.’
Many of the angels have now gone on to be displayed temporarily at Rushden Lakes where is it is hoped their joy can be shared with many over the festive period.
For more information about the St Mary’s 600 Appeal and restoration of the Bede House see St Mary's Church website.