Schools in tune for Christmas

IT may be 16 weeks away - or 110 shopping days for those who leave everything to the last minute - but Christmas songs are already being sung in schools.

IT may be 16 weeks away - or 110 shopping days for those who leave everything to the last minute - but Christmas songs are already being sung in schools.

Thousands of children are practising for a massive charity fundraising event this festive season involving a professionally produced and recorded CD, DVD and a series of concerts.

The project is called One Christmas and is being organised by a team of Christians from churches in the Felixstowe, Woodbridge and Ipswich area.

A total of 42 schools in Felixstowe, Woodbridge, Ipswich, Debenham, and Framlingham will be involved in the event, which is raising money for Christian relief and development charity Tearfund.

Over the past few years, the group's six previous projects, including Heaven2Earth, 4un2us, and Countdown for the King, have raised more than £60,000 for Tearfund.

Around 2,000 key stage two children are expected to take part in recording the One Christmas CD, filming a DVD and performing in concerts over seven nights at the Spa Pavilion in Felixstowe.

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Project spokesman Andrew Thomas said good progress was being made and the group was now aiming to make the children aware of what was happening and get them to join in.

“While Christmas might seem a long way off for many of us, in fact all the songs for the project have now been written and a significant part of the studio recording is already complete,” he said.

“All participating schools are now starting to learn the songs and all children wanting to be part of the project need to get involved now by talking to their teacher and completing a form.

“A number of recording sessions will be taking place during October in various schools in the region.”

Assemblies are being held by the team to encourage the children to get involved in the project.

The first were at Grange Primary and Colneis Junior in Felixstowe this week and youngsters have been shown video clips, told about the project and taught some songs with actions.

The main aims are to provide a creative focus for schools leading up to Christmas, provide a unifying project for children at primary/junior schools, raise awareness of poverty and injustice, and raise money for charity.

The CD is set to be released on November 29, and the music DVD at the concerts, which will take place at the Spa from December 7 to 13.