Bedfordshire's 'biggest Christmas tree' to be unveiled at a festival this weekend - and it's bigger than the Prime Minister's!

Blunham villages reckon they've got one over on Boris Johnson - with their tree dwarfing Number 10's

By Reporter
Thursday, 2nd December 2021, 5:29 pm
Updated Friday, 3rd December 2021, 12:00 pm

A village in Chronicle country reckons it's tree is the biggest in Bedfordshire - and it is set to be unveiled at a festive festival this weekend.

Villagers in Blunham are boasting that they've got one over on Boris Johnson - as the 30ft tree dwarfs the 20ft one in Downing Street.

The whopping Nordmann spruce will be revealed at a mini-festival on Saturday, December 4 featuring live music, a Santa’s Grotto, food and mulled wine.

The tree towers over the pub. Right: A sneak preview of the lights as they're testing - with photographer Alex Kite's daughters Francesca (left) and Amelia (right) in the foreground.

The tree towers above The Horseshoes pub, where it will spend the next month.

In fact it's is so big, it took six people and a giant forklift truck to lift it up into place in a specially made concrete block!

The festival starts at 3pm, with visitors able to tuck into fish and chips or a hog roast and enjoy a cheeky tipple in the form of mulled wine. The Horseshoes pub will be serving all throughout the day too.

Kids will sing carols to welcome Father Christmas, who will arrive with his bell just after 4pm. There’s even a comedian - local Clive Beech - doing a stand up routine and villagers Danny Turnbull and Minhee Jones will provide live music.

A forklift truck gets the tree in place - with Salvatore Genovese (left) and Nick Day overseeing the process.

A staggering 4,200 lights will be switched on at 5pm - with silent fireworks as villagers sing along to Christmas favourite Silent Night.

A raft of raffle prizes includes a hamper from the village shop and free grub from the local pizza shop.

The event is free to attend - and everyone is welcome to come along and bask in the festive lights of the Christmas giant!

Peter Middlicott, owner of Allgrowth in Sandy - a firm that specialises in trees and donated the fir - said: "It may well be the biggest in the county, and even the country. It certainly bigger than Boris's tree, though not his ego."

A huge concrete block holds the tree in place. Pic: Dan Jones

A group of Blunham residents loosely called The Christmas Tree Gang organised the first village tree last year to cheer people up during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Salvatore Genovese, 49, who grew up in Blunham and is now the UK's biggest chilli grower, said: “A friend called Alex Kite mentioned it on Facebook to get the village together at a time most things were shut.

“So before long a ragtag band of us were helping chop down a giant tree from a local supplier, battled to put it up and nearly hurt ourselves putting lights and decorations on it.

“This year we are a little more organized and have had loads of help from local companies to make it better - and safer!

“We got a concrete block made to put the tree in so it’s solid and won’t blow over in the wind, for example.”

He added: "We wanted to make it bigger and better this year. It's huge. We reckon it is the biggest in Bedfordshire."

Horseshoes landlord Roy Brown said: "It's a pleasure to have the tree outside again. My only worry is the electricity bill - that's a lot of lights to power."

The village wants to thank Frosts Garden Centres for the lights and Breedon for the two-tonne concrete base to hold the tree in place.