Hundreds show their love for Kettering wood at 'magical' winter festival

They gathered at twilight to celebrate the onset of winter and their collective love of the wood.

By Sam Wildman
Tuesday, 14th December 2021, 10:06 am
Updated Tuesday, 14th December 2021, 10:08 am
Pictures credit: Simon Eppey and Dez Dell
Pictures credit: Simon Eppey and Dez Dell

A Kettering wood was transformed into a 'magical' winter wonderland on Sunday (December 12).

An incredible 400 people gathered at the Save Weekley Hall Wood Woodland Winter Festival at twilight to celebrate the onset of winter and their collective love of the wood.

It sparkled with lights and lanterns and people followed the path which was interspersed with singing, poetry, storytelling, artwork and sculpture.

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Pictures credit: Simon Eppey and Dez Dell

Local singers, poets and artists came together with the Save Weekley Hall Wood community organisation to show how much they love the wood and their opposition to the plans to build five massive warehouses on the wildlife meadow and the surrounding woodland.

Adults and children experienced the adventure of being in the woodland as darkness set in, culminating in a singalong in a woodland den led by singer Tom Oi.

Save Weekley Hall Wood organiser, Polly Shackleton, said: “We were amazed by the number of people who showed up to celebrate, explore and enjoy the wood with us tonight, and also by the outpouring of love that our community has shown for this area.

"It is more important than ever to protect much-loved and much-used spaces like this and this event reinforced exactly why we are all here united in our efforts to protect the wildlife and woodland here at Weekley Hall Wood.”

Pictures credit: Simon Eppey and Dez Dell

Artwork and sculpture by Rachel Flynn and Christina Ten Bosch contributed to the visual impact of the festival, with Catherine Matthews' mural setting the scene at the start.

Alex Gardner, Stevie Lawless and Zahra Sullivan joined with Tom Oi to celebrate the event in song and the event was topped and tailed by local poets David Garrett, Keiron Farrow and Loz Anstey, who performed their own poems about the wood as well as Kezzabelle Ambler who sprinkled her magical stories into the heads of the children who stopped to listen.

Pictures credit: Simon Eppey and Dez Dell