Nelson Christ Church Cathedral and Tree Festival organisers Dean Mike Hawke and Patron Bev Greig are excited about his year’s event. Photo: Erin Bradnock.

Annual tree festival lights up cathedral


More than 65 trees were propped up for last Friday’s grand opening of Christ Church Cathedral’s Tree Festival.

Following Covid-19, the organising committee was originally anticipating fewer numbers this year but were blown away by the support from the community.

“This year, the festival is a real celebration for our team of five million,” says organising committee member Bev Greig.

Committee members Erin Beatson, Jocelyn Smith, Dean Mike Hawke, Judith Fitchett, Chris Fitchett and David Lucas have been working tirelessly to ensure this year’s tree festival is just as impressive as ever.

Dean Mike Hawke says the festival has been running for more than 10 years and is about bringing people together and opening the church up to the wider community.

“As a place of Christianity, we see our space as a home base for Christmas and we want to open this space up for others to celebrate and share what Christmas means to them,” he says.

Groups from across the region have contributed to the festive space inside the cathedral including schools, charities, craft groups, political parties and social groups.

The committee agrees that the festivities would not have been made possible if not for the help of community groups and business.

Glenn Roberts Electrical spared an electrician for a day as well as donating electrical cords to set up lighting through the cathedral. New World Nelson donated gifts for the winners of the community vote for best tree and Nelmac gave up their time to install a hefty tree as the church’s centrepiece with the help of a scissor-lift donated by High Reach Nelson.

The festival runs from 9am to 7pm each day until January 17.