Community comes together for the Festival of Trees

More than 42 trees lit up the pop-up shop for the 2021 event.

Members of Uplift Cafe and knitting group stood by Christmas tree

Members of Uplift Café and Knitting group with Julie Williams of Francis House (kneeling left) with their Christmas Tree

Festive cheer and the generosity of members of the public has once again made the Francis House Festival of Trees a Christmas success raising more than £14,500 in profit for the hospice.

For the last fifteen years, Quayside MediaCityUK has provided a home to the pop-up shop of stunning Christmas trees, each uniquely decorated by local groups and businesses, national brands, and individuals.

Visitors to the centre in Salford Quays place bids on their favourite tree during a six week period in the run up to Christmas. The shop is transformed into a Winter Wonderland complete with model village through the hard work of staff and volunteers of Francis House, and also sells a range of Christmas decorations, gifts and festive items.

Julie Williams, fundraising officer at Francis House organised the event with colleague Jason Connor.

She said: “I would like to thank our volunteers, Jane K, Judy, Mary and Alan, Jane C for helping in the shop as we simply couldn’t run this event without them.  I would also like to thank all of our customers, new and old, for supporting this event either by visiting in person or bidding online.

“A special mention must go to the staff at Quayside MediaCityUK – Joanne, Kelly, Gary and Shannon who once again generously donated use of a unit in the centre and helped us set up the shop in time for opening on October 30.”

For the duration of the bidding period, customers could browse the trees and place bids online via a dedicated auction website.

Christmas tree with United memorabilia

CLS Complete Logistical Solutions tree packed with Manchester United memorabilia raised £605

42 trees

In the first week of December all the trees were sold to the highest bidder, collected and found new homes in time for Christmas.

The shop this year was packed with 42 trees offering items including hampers, gift vouchers, theatre tickets, football memorabilia, handmade items and even an iPad. A tree by Towers Business Park Tree claimed the highest bid of £750.

Anne-Marie Noon from Real Time Communications in Bury, sponsored a tree containing hampers of food, wine and vouchers. Anne-Marie said: “We took part in the festival of trees as myself and my partner Simon have helped personally with fundraising for Francis House for many years. The company that we both work for RTC Automotive Solutions were eager to help.

“We loved the whole process from decorating the tree, seeing all the other trees and watching the bids. We will definitely be making this an annual event and would highly recommend other companies to help where they can.”

"It was my absolute pleasure to take part in the Festival of Trees and glad our tree raised £320. I look forward to taking part next year."

Paul Glover, Co-op Store Manager Ellenbrook

Francis House would like to thank all of the tree sponsors.

Newell Brands, Lowbury Construction Ltd, Weightmans LLP, Manchester City FC, Hassra Trafford Park,  RTC Auto, The Cash Family, Tesco East Didsbury, Manchester Rotary Club, Co-op, Apadmi, Lauren’s Little Stars, JP Goldman, Urmston & District WI, Swizzles Matlow Ltd, JL Executive Recruitment, Fibre Hair Salon, Nando’s MediaCity, Manchester Occupational Therapy Services, Rotary Club of Salford & Swinton, My Learning File, Margaret Howell, Cardinal Maritime Ltd, Manchester United Foundation, Towers Business Park Didsbury, Tesco Extra Stockport, Alchemist MediaCity, Complete Logistical Solutions, Virgin Media, Quayside MediaCityUK, Morrisons Reddish, Uplift Café & Knitting Group Stretford, David Woodrow,  The Floorbrite Group, Cast of Coronation Street, PMS International Ltd, The Cadbury Shop, Toytown.

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