Castle Donington public relations firm Poppy PR has donated a community Christmas tree which residents are invited to decorate with their own wishes.
The company, based at The Old Vicarage, in Market Street, has sponsored the planting of a community Christmas tree at the parish green on Castle Donington’s Spitfire Road estate.
Organised by Castle Donington Parish Council, the tree has been adorned with lights – and residents are being invited to add decorations of their own, including homemade baubles and messages containing important memories or wishes for the coming year.
Although currently standing just a few feet tall, big things are expected of the Spitfire Road tree in future years, as this is the first Christmas tree that the parish council has rooted with a view to it remaining in situ permanently.
Castle Donington resident Tina Clough, the founder and managing director of Poppy PR, said she was extremely proud to donate a “living legacy” that people could hopefully enjoy for many years to come.
“Just like the village of Castle Donington itself, the Spitfire Road tree may be small, but it’s perfectly formed,” she said. “And, thanks to the foresight of the parish council, we are hopefully going to see it flourish over time.
“It’s such a fabulous and poignant idea to ask people in the community to decorate the tree with homemade festive crafts and, importantly, their wishes for the future.
“Now, more than any time in my living memory, we all need some hope – and we all need to see a few wishes come true. What better time of year to make a wish than Christmas?”
Poppy PR moved to Castle Donington from its former home in Ilkeston in January 2020 – just two months prior to the first Covid lockdown.
Tina said: “We’ve been so impressed with how the community has pulled together during this time. Moving here was the best thing our business could have done.
“It’s been tough for everyone, and having the opportunity to add a memory to the tree will be just as important to many as adding a wish. We’ve all had our personal tragedies, myself included.”
The Spitfire Road tree is one of three community trees that the parish council has installed this year. Other Christmas trees have been placed at Pinfold Gardens and Wakefield Court, off Barroon.
Castle Donington based Johnsons General Store, in Borough Street, has also sponsored the parish’s seasonal community trees alongside Poppy PR.
Fiona Palmer, clerk of Castle Donington Parish Council, said: “We are so grateful for the generosity of Poppy PR and Johnsons General Store. It’s wonderful to see our local businesses supporting their local communities at Christmas.
“If I was to add my own message to the tree in Spitfire Road, I would wish good health and success to all residents and businesses in the area. And I also wish the tree a long and fruitful life.”
Poppy PR also laid a wreath this year at Castle Donington’s Remembrance Day Parade. And, during the early pandemic, it set up a coronavirus support page for residents who were either elderly or shielding to enable them to get help collecting medications or shopping.