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Cambridge Regional College’s volunteers help light up Christmas for the National Trust

Student volunteers from Huntingdon have helped light up Christmas for thousands of people visiting a winter wonderland at the National Trust’s Anglesey Abbey.

Current and former special needs students, all co-workers in Cambridge Regional College’s Huntingdon conservation group the Green Team, created giant willow baubles for the Trust’s annual Winter Lights exhibition.

Their work was seen by more than 20,000 visitors to the sell-out event which lights up the gardens and grounds of Anglesey Abbey – one of the Christmas highlights for the National Trust.

The team, based at the college’s Huntingdon campus, carry out voluntary conservation work at Anglesey Abbey and Hinchingbrooke Park, and made the novel Christmas decorations using willow harvested during coppicing at Hinchingbrooke.

Supervisor Andy Fountain, who leads the Green Team, said the willow baubles – four feet in diameter – were a central part of the Winter Lights.

“They are a lovely piece of work and we are all very proud that they are part of the Winter Lights exhibition,” he said. “The Green Team co-workers carry out a lot of conservation work in the grounds of Anglesey Abbey and at Hinchingbrooke Park and created the baubles from willow cut down as part of their clearance work.

“Everything we do enables co-workers to fulfil their potential, focusing on their abilities rather than any disabilities, and the Christmas baubles are a great example of their conservation work in action.”

Jack Watson, Volunteer & Community Co-ordinator at Anglesey Abbey, said: “Here at Anglesey we are very grateful for the help of the Green Team, especially at a time when our teams are under a lot of pressure to get things ready for our winter lights event. To have a team building one of our structures for the event is such a big help and gives us time to focus on other areas. Thank you Green Team.”

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