The winners of the 2013 Chester Cathedral Christmas Tree Festival have been announced with jewellers Boodles and Dee Point Primary School in Blacon scooping the top prizes.

The festival, the first of its kind in the cathedral’s history, ran throughout November and December and featured 45 majestic Christmas trees decorated by nine schools and 35 businesses across Chester and Cheshire.

Visitors to the cathedral peaked at 13,000 during the Christmas period and more than 450 votes were cast in the festival’s favourite tree ballot.

The festival had three prize categories – schools, businesses and clubs and societies.

Dee Point Primary School in Blacon secured first prize in the schools category with their decorations made up poems and photographs of loved ones. Boodles scooped first place in the business category with a luxurious display in white, silver and pale pink.

Honey Shepherd from Boodles is awarded a trophy by Vice Dean Canon Peter Howell-Jones
Honey Shepherd from Boodles is awarded a trophy by Vice Dean Canon Peter Howell-Jones
 

Chester Cathedral Nave Choir came out on top in the clubs and societies group with their hand-made music-themed decorations.

The winners were presented with an engraved trophy and passes for an exclusive behind-the-scenes first look at Cathedral at Height, the cathedral’s brand new access all areas visitor attraction opening this Easter.

The festival raised £2,725 for chosen charity the Hospice of the Good Shepherd in Backford.

Vice Dean of Chester Cathedral, Peter Howell-Jones, said: “The Christmas Tree Festival was a wonderful addition to the cathedral this Christmas. We were very keen to do something that helped us to engage with the local community and welcome more people into the building during such a special time of the year.

“We were wowed by the creativity of all of our participants and our visitors thoroughly enjoyed looking at all of the trees. We are also very pleased that we have been able to support the Hospice of the Good Shepherd through this initiative.

“The festival will definitely be back next year - and we already have a waiting list for 2014 trees!”