Chichester Christmas tree centre of £10,000 fundraising

Blessing the tree - The Dean of Chichester Dr Nicholas Frayling alongside  the mayor Anne Scicluna and Rotarys David Hilditch, Richard Hancock and Chris Doman.  C121612-1 Chi Christmas Lights  Photo Louise Adams
Blessing the tree - The Dean of Chichester Dr Nicholas Frayling alongside the mayor Anne Scicluna and Rotarys David Hilditch, Richard Hancock and Chris Doman. C121612-1 Chi Christmas Lights Photo Louise Adams

THE magnificent Christmas tree at the heart of Chichester was the focal point for raising more than £10,000 for charity.

Throughout the festive season the Tree of Goodwill, next to the Cross, was the fundraising hub for charities in the area.

“It’s been such a good thing for the community,” said Richard Plowman, vice-president of the Rotary Club of Chichester.

Mr Plowman paid tribute to the many individuals and organisations who made the fundraising possible.

“We’re very pleased with it and the support of the community and the efforts of all involved,” he added.

More than 20 choirs sung at the Cross throughout December and performed despite the weather conditions, staying out to raise money even when temperatures plummeted below zero.

The tree was sponsored by the West Dean Estate (The Edward James Foundation) which was erected with the help of foresters David Laker and Darren Norris and with equipment loaned by Jewsons and Beaver Tool Hire.

A thank-you lunch for these and many others involved was held at the Park Hotel on Tuesday.

The charities that benefited were Canine Partners, Friends of Chichester Hospital, St Wilfred’s Hospice, Hope and Homes for Children, The Multiple Sclerosis Society, Parkinson’s Disease Society, Snowdrop, Contact 88 and Inner Wheel, together with the three Chichester Rotary Clubs charitable funds.

The tree of goodwill is organised by the Rotary Club of Chichester and supported by the members of Priory and Harbour Rotary Clubs.