Living Advent Calendar returns to Dore after lockdown success

Written by Sophie Watson

The Dore Living Advent Calendar is set to take place again this month after its success during lockdown last year.

Throughout December, Dore residents and businesses will decorate their front windows with Christmas scenes to celebrate advent.

A new window will be revealed every day on the countdown to Christmas.

Margaret Peart, the organiser of the Living Calendar and a Committee Member of Dore Village Society (DVS), said of last year’s event: “It was a very positive thing at quite a bleak time.

“The feedback we got was very positive. Because of the circumstances and the restrictions we were under, it was a really good thing to be part of.”

This year, 27 windows will be revealed, meaning some advent days will have multiple displays.

One Advent day one, 33 Church Lane presented their Christmas window, before Dore Dental Care uncovered their Festive scene yesterday.

Tonight, the Methodist Church will reveal their advent widow.

Rev Gail Hunt was “delighted” to be involved in the Living Advent Calendar again this year.

She said: “The church stands in the centre of the village and the people are keen to live out their faith in the community.

“Our window reflects the light of Christ which shines even in the darkest days.”

Last year, there were 41 advent windows. The calendar trail was eight miles long and stretched from Totley Brook Road to Brickhouse Lane.

The trail this year is not as long but DVS hope it will still encourage the community to get out the house.

Margaret has creative an interactive map to guide you around the Living Advent Calendar.

She said: “You don’t have to do the advent walk in order. You can make up your own trial. that is the great thing about it.”

The Living Advent Calendar wants families to work together and be creative.

Last year, there were a range of window designs. Some were created by younger members of the family, while other people went for a more artistic approach.

Margaret said it was hard to pick a favourite 2020 window: “We had a cycling Santa wearing a La Vuelta T Shirt. We also had a fantastic Van Gogh ‘Starry Night’ styled window. There were some peace angels and one drawn by a younger person of father Christmas asleep in bed.

“There were loads and loads. Everyone was my favourite.”

Sue Unwin, a Dore Resident who is involved in the Living Calendar again this year, said: “It’s quite exciting spotting people driving, walking and cycling by checking out the windows.

“I volunteered last year. My window was two peace doves with olive branches in the beaks facing each other. It was great to focus on something creative in such a difficult period.”

“This year, the main image on my bedroom window will be climate related.”

The window scenes will be on display until January 1 2022.

Margaret wants to encourage other villages to get involved.

She said: “I think it is a really fantastic thing to do. If any other community wanted to do it, it is not that onerous to set up.

“Once you’ve got your participants they get on with their own windows. You don’t have to produce a theme or organise them in any way.

“It’s a really nice way to get a community involved with each other.”

Written by Sophie Watson

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