More than 500 people visited the four-day Diamond Jubilee flower and arts festival at Wisborough Green parish church, raising nearly £3,000 for the Hope for Tomorrow charity and for the upkeep of the church.
Stories from the Bible was the theme of the arrangements which ranged from the Garden of Eden and the Parting of the Red Sea’ to Joseph’s Coat of Many Colours and the Birth of Christ.
“This is the first time the Friends of St Peter Ad Vincula have attempted such an ambitious project and has provided enormous enjoyment for so many visitors,” said John Farmer, retiring chairman of the Friends of St Peter.
“I am delighted the whole festival was such a resounding success.
“Many came to enjoy the spectacle and fragrance of the flowers and then stayed to enjoy the Fairtrade coffee and home-made cakes provided by the church’s Xpresso team. Many others enjoyed the variety of evening entertainments.”
During the festival members of Lewes Little Theatre performed Through the Looking Glass, using selected readings, poetry and music to look at issues from different perspectives.
Director of music Malcolm Brinson organised a concert on Friday evening with the help of an augmented church choir together with the all-age orchestra and talented individuals.
Summer Jazz was the main attraction on Saturday featuring Simon Bates and Paul ‘Harry the piano’ Harris, stars of Loxwood Jazz and Blues, preceded by a picnic and with strawberries and fizz served during the interval.
On Sunday, the Rev Peter Dixon closed with a festival Songs of Praise when more than 40 people raised the roof with hymns and enjoyed a collection of readings.
Helen Vause, whose original idea inspired the festival and who has been a key organiser, said afterwards: “The success of the whole event has surpassed my wildest dreams, but it couldn’t have happened without the hard work and enthusiasm of all the helpers, from flower arrangers to performers and from technical support to the providers of the refreshments.
“Special thanks for the generous sponsorship of local events management company Pimpernel Events, who provided technical assistance with lighting, sound and use of their marquee.”
Proceeds will go towards preserving and improving the core fabric of the Grade I listed church and to the Hope for Tomorrow charity which is bringing cancer treatment closer to home through the provision of mobile chemotherapy units.