Deck the (Castle) Halls

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It’s time to eat, drink, and be merry with a few good old Christmas carols this year as Lancaster Christian Union take their annual carol service to new heights, sending it off campus and into Lancaster Castle.

On 3rd December, the Christian Union are joining together with the ULMS Brass Band and newly formed Chamber Choir, as well as both the Gospel Choir and Pentecostal Gospel Choir, Barnardo’s society and many of the local churches to bring the students of Lancaster a fun and festive celebration.

This is by far the most ambitious event the Christian Union has undertaken to date, opening the event not only to students of the university but members of the public for the first time. They have held nothing back in hiring out this beautiful venue and even sending a personal letter of invitation to Her Majesty the Queen, Duke of Lancaster.

This vision of seeing the carol service taken into Lancaster Castle is one that’s been brewing for a while as it was the first idea that the current executive committee had back in February of this year. While it seems almost hard for them to believe that this off-hand and far-fetched proposal has blossomed into a real and exciting endeavour, they have found that with much hard work in the preparation, their vision has finally been realised after nine months of dreams, discussions and deliberations. Elliot Sloman, President of the Christian Union commented, ‘I’m really looking forward to using the castle as a venue for a Carol Service! I think it’s perfect and will really garner a magical atmosphere.’

On that note, it’s time to throw away all of your preconceptions of boring carol services in dingy church halls and haunting memories of traumatic primary school nativity plays as the Christian Union endeavour to bring the traditional Christmas message to life.

This is an open air event and, in true British tradition, will be going ahead whatever the weather, so get your Christmas jumpers and woolly scarves out to join them in singing in the great outdoors. Nothing says Christmas quite like joining together in carols with cold hands and warm drinks but listening to the classic tunes of the brass band on a crisp winter evening. With mince pies and mulled wine all round, there’s festive cheer to be had for all.

The carols will all be led by Lancaster University’s very own award-winning Brass Band and will also feature an exciting performances from the Uni’s new Chamber Choir and prestigious Gospel Choirs. Adam Jones, Team Leader for University and Colleges Christian Fellowship (UCCF) will also be delving into the well-known and much loved Christmas story with a short talk to get us all in the Christmas spirit.

The Christian Union are also partnering with the Barnardo’s Society as they bring their passion to support the work of the charity to the students of Lancaster. There will be opportunities to hear about the work they do as well as donate to this worthwhile cause if you wish.

The support for this event has been overwhelming, with help from ten local churches affiliated with the Christian Union all willing to lend a hand (and a mince pie or two), and it promises to be a really great evening of good, unadulterated Christmas cheer. It seems all the CU members are on board and excited about the event, and what better place to have a good old-fashioned carol service than the beautiful and historic venue of Lancaster castle? ‘It’s a Carol Service, in the castle, what isn’t there to get excited about?!’ exclaimed CU member Dean Lawson. Let’s just hope the weather holds off for a truly fantastic evening.

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