It just would not be Christmas in Lincolnshire without the National Trust decking its historic halls in fabulous festive style, hosting carols, Christmas fairs, festive craft workshops, and even Father Christmas himself.
Whether it is garland making, mince pie baking, hanging thousands of fairy lights, or stepping into the pointed shoes of one of Fathers Christmas’ elves as he sees scores of eager children; it is the National Trust’s volunteers who bring its places to life at Christmas time.
Once again, the Trust is thanking its teams of volunteers for helping create another year of wonderful festive experiences for visitors to enjoy at its places.
With over 30 National Trust properties across the Midlands opening over December, it takes thousands of people willing to give up their free time to transform these historic houses, create festive activities and bring a little bit of Christmas joy to every visitor.
From dressing 20-feet tall Christmas trees, to crafting delicate Christmas decorations; researching how Christmas was celebrated in the past, to shuttling visitors to and from Father Christmas’ grotto; volunteers are vital for every one of the National Trust’s open days of Christmas.
At Belton House, between Sleaford and Grantham, volunteer Sheila Clatworthy is part of the team preparing the site for its Christmas opening this year, which includes decorating rooms for candlelight Christmas tours, and helping put together a celebratory winter feast from the time of Lady Adelaide Brownlow.
Sheila says: “Helping prepare Belton house for Christmas has allowed me to be creative but on such a huge scale. Creating displays for the period, it was so easy to imagine the family and house staff were actually here. My Christmas has come early I have enjoyed it so much!”
Sheila is one of over 850 National Trust volunteers in Lincolnshire, out of a total of 11,500 National Trust volunteers from across the Midlands, who gifted over 965,000 hours of their time last year to help keep their local Trust places thriving.
Rachel Mora-Bannon, the National Trust’s Volunteering and Participation Consultant in the Midlands, says: “From getting into Christmas character, creating dazzling decorations to welcoming our visitors; volunteers support every aspect of Christmas at our places. A huge amount of care and effort goes into getting our places ready for Christmas, as we try to reflect the history of each property through our Christmas preparations. We’re really grateful to our teams of tireless volunteers who help make this time of year so special, and memorable for everyone.”
Find out more about volunteering at your local National Trust place by visiting: https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/volunteer
Festive events taking place at National Trust places in Lincolnshire this Christmas include:
Gunby Estate: offers a musical Christmas this year, with a festive treat for the ears as well as the eyes. Enjoy seeing the house sparkle with decorations, sing along to the festive music and tuck into a lovely mince pie in the tea-room.
Tattershall Castle: hosts an alternative to the hustle and bustle of high street shopping at its Christmas Market and joins with Lord Cromwell’s church next door to put on a Carol Concert.
For full details of Christmas with the National Trust in Lincolnshire, visit: https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/lists/festive-fun-near-in-and-around-lincolnshire