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Light Up A Life at Newark Castle for Beaumond House Community Hospice

Photographs of loved ones were pinned on a memory wall of lights at the annual Light Up A Life event for Beaumond House Community Hospice, Newark, last night.

For the third year it was held in conjunction with the Carols At The Castle organised by Churches Together In Newark.

Beaumond House fundraising and events officer Holly Fowler said she hoped the evening had brought comfort for those who had lost loved ones as well as bringing festive cheer to the local community.

"Everyone was welcome," she said. "Those we have had the privilege of supporting, their families and their loved ones, but also those who wanted to come along to celebrate Christmas."

Captain Matt Elsey of Newark Salvation Army, who is the chairman of Churches Together, said Christmas was a time of great joy, hope and expectation.

"But it can also be a time where we stop to reflect on those that won't be sharing with us," he said.

"As Churches Together In Newark we want Carols In The Castle to give an opportunity to stop and reflect on those loved ones we have lost, but also to acknowledge the wonder, support and blessing Beaumond House is to our community."

Mr David Tomkinson, a director with Beaumond House, said he hoped the event would bring comfort to those at Christmas.

He said Beaumond House was a special place but said they needed £1m in order to keep the blue doors of the hospice open, of which £750,000 has to come from the community each year.

People attending the event brought along photographs to pin on the wall of lights put up in front of the castle walls. Some also lit a lantern in memory.

They included the family of Joanne Barratt of Newark who died in 2015.

Her parents Marilyn and Frank Barratt said they found the event a comfort and were full of praise for the work at Beaumond House.

Mrs Margaret Kirton of Balderton pinned up three photographs of family members, including her husband Terry who died this year aged 71.

"The hospice has always been there when we needed it," she said. "It is a wonderful place."

Jeanette Ayre of Newark lit a lantern and placed a picture of her husband Geoffrey, who died this summer, on the wall of lights.

She was accompanied by her daughters and said they had come along because this would be their first Christmas without him.

Newark Rotary Club helped at the event by serving mulled wine.

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