Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Christmas and Hanukkah in the North West

I've been out and about with my camera taking seasonal photographs for your delectation and delight.

We start with two photos of the lovely Warrington Town and Golden Gates complete with Christmas tree, during the day, and at night. 

Warrington Town Hall with Golden Gates at Christmas 2012

And not to be  beaten by a Cheshire Town Hall, I then took a photo of this tree in Liverpool Town Hall.

I have to say it is not a great photo, it is tricky to take pictures of lights indoors. If you use your flash it seems to shatter the light and if you don't it looks blurred. I am still working on the best way to do this on the new camera phone. The tree however did look lovely, do go and see it while you are in town. 

Tonight I was at St George's Hall for the fifth night lighting of the Menorah, which is part of the celebration of Hanukkah, a Jewish festival. One candle is lit each night over the course of Hanukkah and tonight was the specific civic celebration evening which is why I was invited. If you would like to see it, it will still be on the plateau for a few more days until the end of the festival.

In the photo you can see that the first five candles are now alight. We were addressed by an American Rabbi, Rabbi Kievman, and then by The Right Worshipful, Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Councillor Sharon Sullivan who spoke briefly  before giving the excited little children Hanukkah treats. She was joined by Councillors Jeremy Wolfson, Barry Kushner, John Prince (and his wife Shirley), Christine Banks and me.

Fried foods are eaten to commemorate the importance of oil during the celebration of Hanukkah so we ate traditional doughnuts and were given small bags of chocolate coins, part of the tradition of Hanukkah Gelt

Christians amongst readers might be reminded of the lighting of advent candles which we do each Sunday for four weeks and then on Christmas Day we light the large central candle.

Lord Mayor, Councillor Sharon Sullivan with Councillor Jeremy Wolfson (Labour, Childwall)

Lord Mayor, Councillor Sharon Sullivan with yours truly in festive red hat, red scarf, red bag and red cheeks (you will just have to imagine how cold it was, but certainly around zero, if not actually a degree or two below).

And finally, not to be outdone by any building in the world, I took a photo of the wonderful St George's Hall with its curtain of festive lights. 

I have also seen two other lovely trees this week.

One was in the Anglican Cathedral where I went with Lisa on our annual Carol Service evening, in aid of the NSPCC where the lovely Catherine Hegarty and the children of the Liverpool Signing Choir were performing (and who sent me a beautiful card for helping them to make it to the Olympic opening ceremony where they did us so proud, signing to Imagine, one of the greatest anthems to come out of the city!).

I am there again later for the St Hilda's School Carol Service so will endeavour to photograph the tree in all its immense splendour.

And then I saw a small neat tree in the reception of Liverpool City Council's Municipal Building bedecked in corporate purple decorations which took my eye. Perhaps a reader might take a pic of this and send it in for inclusion?

If you would like to send in a photo of a tree, or a menorah, or indeed any festive lights which take your fancy, please do so! The best will be uploaded on the blog.

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