From 4:30pm until 7:30pm a local Christmas community event took place on Ashcroft Green, the newly enhanced green space on Ashcroft Road, organised by Voluntary Centre Services, West Lindsey District Council and a team made up of organisations working in the area. And what a huge success it was!
The Green was full of light with festive colours illuminating the fencing and the newly planted Christmas Tree, making the event impossible to miss as you passed by.
Safer Streets Community Development Project Officer at Voluntary Centre Services, and organiser of the event, Barry Rooks, said:
“This is our second Christmas event here on Ashcroft Green. Our goal is to establish annual events in this location, with an event in Summer and another in Winter for local residents to enjoy.”
“One of our goals for the events on Ashcroft Green is to have everything free to attendees and accessible to all, and we have managed to meet that goal. Every single one of our activities for the event is free of charge, meaning that everyone can get involved in the festivities, win some prizes, see Santa and more. All without costing them anything.”
Many attendees of the event were grateful for the free aspect, with local resident Anna saying:
“So many Christmas events now cost far too much for me to be able to take my two children to. It is a breath of fresh air to come somewhere and it not cost me a penny.”
Many local organisations attended the event, including Gainsborough Children’s Centre, Hope Church Gainsborough, X-Church, Alive Church, We Are With You, LEAP, Night Light Café, Salvation Army and P3.
These organisations came together to provide all of the fantastic giveaways, competitions, refreshments and more for the local community. During the event there were many activities for people to get involved in, including a coconut shy, face painting, meeting The Grinch, Santa and his elves plus free competitions to win sweet treats and more.
PC Newton from Lincolnshire Police was at the event and said:
“We came last year and although it was a typical rainy day lots of people still joined us. This year we’re glad to see the weather is dry and the atmosphere is brilliant with so many people here again.”
The Gainsborough Branch of The Salvation Army were in attendance, playing some Christmas Carols for people to sing along to, creating a calming yet joyous atmosphere.
Abiola, a local resident who moved to the nearby area six years ago, enjoyed the event with her six and eight-year-old children and said:
“Repurposing the park was needed to be able to bring the community together, and it has done just that, which is wonderful.”
“The children have really enjoyed the event and met up with some friends from school as well. I came to the Jubilee celebration here in Summer and both events have been fantastic”.
Abiola’s oldest child was thrilled to have won some chocolates after successfully “hitting the donkey” during one of the free activities.
Assistant Director, Homes & Communities, at West Lindsey District Council, Di Krochmal, who attended the event, said:
“We are delighted to have worked with some amazing organisations whose hard work has enabled this great event for the local community. At a time when the cost of living crisis is impacting so many seeing families coming together and enjoying themselves is exactly what was intended. We look forward to seeing further events at Ashcroft Green and would welcome local residents getting involved in the planning.”