Parish church calls on community to tie a ribbon in memory of loved ones this Christmas

The Royston church restoration is continuing - and from December the community is encouraged to tie a ribbon in memory of...

The Royston church restoration is continuing - and from December the community is encouraged to tie a ribbon in memory of a loved one on the gates. Picture: Lance McDonald - Credit: Archant

Royston’s parish church is calling on the community to remember absent loved ones with a symbolic ribbon this Christmas.

Before the devastating fire at St John the Baptist Church in December 2018, people were able to hang a bauble and a note on the Christmas tree each year to remember a loved one who wouldn’t be with them.

The huge tree was a must-see at Christmas, and saw scores of people attach baubles to it’s lower branches.

Since the accidental blaze, the church hasn’t been able to carry on with this tradition – although last year Newlings of Royston in Fish Hill kindly put up a small tree in their office to enable people to hang their baubles.

The church’s Kay Makowiecki said: “This year we have thought it would be a nice idea to securely tie a small piece of ribbon, approximately 24 centimetres in length, to the church gates in Melbourn Street and those in Church Lane, in memory of a loved one who won’t be with them this Christmas.

“This can be done any time from the beginning of December.

“Unfortunately due to the weather, we won’t be able to have any labels as they will get wet and fall off.

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“Ribbons are a good way of remembering someone, as in the song, ‘Tie a Yellow Ribbon (round the ole oak tree)’.

“If you don’t have any ribbon, we will be giving out pieces on our stall on the market on Saturday, December 5.”

The church continues to undergo an extensive rebuild and reordering to make the space more adaptable.

Services were held at the town hall – though these have moved online due to the second lockdown.

The church’s market stall will raise funds for the refurbishment.

Kay said: “We will be selling Christmas cards, a cookery book – which has recipes from local people and guests like Paul Hollywood and Carrie Fisher – bags, mugs and much more.

“This will also be an opportunity for people to try out one of the new church chairs and sponsor one too if they wish.”

Royston First, the town’s business improvement district, has confirmed Christmas lights will begin to appear this weekend in the town, starting on Saturday. The lights will then be switched on at the end of the month on November 26.