Communities everywhere have their own treasured Christmas rituals that involve a tree, but why do we all get so excited about firs and spruces?
Using trees as centrepieces for festivals is nothing new; many aspects of our Christmas traditions originate from the pagans. During the Middle Ages, an evergreen known as ‘The Paradise Tree’ was decorated with apples as a symbol of the feast of Adam and Eve on 24th December. The Christians picked 25th December to outshine the pagan winter solstice, and Queen Victoria’s German husband Albert imported the custom of the Christmas tree from his homeland.
Nowadays we even have artificial trees around which to gather (not that any of us real Christmas tree purists at Christmas Forest HQ would dream of doing such a thing). Artificial Christmas trees were first produced by a toilet brush company and once you know this, it could be hard to get that association out of your mind, even if they have come a long and sparkly way since then.
Festive fir trees can come in varying shades of green, and, like all other purchases, if you can buy one grown responsibly and sold locally, all the better. At The Christmas Forest we buy our trees from Scotland, Ireland, Hampshire and Denmark (the Danes are the true kings of Christmas, they even have apprenticeships in growing trees and the majority of trees sold in Europe are grown in the land of Vikings).
As our TreeEO Kelty explains, “I think that the Christmas tree in the UK is our last surviving folk tradition. For us as a society, there is nothing else like it. The emotion around Christmas is enormous, it can be a difficult time of year for some, but then that is because it can be so moving and memorable. The tree is a lynchpin holding the whole ceremony, and in a way, the whole country together. As everyone sits around the Christmas tree opening presents, it becomes a kind of still point.”
And so the season is nearly upon us. It’s been 328 long days since we closed shop last year, and now it’s only three short days ’til our first store opens and we’re super excited. We are all really looking forward to seeing you whenever you come to the Forest. If you can’t make it in to see us then you can already pick and click on our website with delivery to your door starting from Thursday this week.
All opening times are on our website and for any tree related question, we’re here to help anytime on 01865 427067.