Norwegian gift of Christmas trees arrive
Orkney Islands Council has taken delivery of two Christmas trees from Norway, for the annual tree lighting ceremony at St Magnus Cathedral.
The trees for inside and outside the St Magnus Cathedral - from Grimstaad and Hordaland respectively - are delivered each year from Norway as part of the Orkney/Norway twinning relationship, with this year’s transportation a joint effort by Northlink and Northwards.
The Cathedral Tree Lighting Ceremony takes place on Saturday 9 December. It includes the annual St Lucy Procession, as well as a performance by Kirkwall City Pipe Band. The event is free and everyone is welcome to attend.
The Tree Lighting event also brings to a close Magnus 900, a year of activity marking the 900th anniversary of the death of St Magnus. The Orkney Pilgrimage Group who were behind the creation of the St Magnus Way will join the Kirkwall City Pipe Band in a short parade along the very last leg of the 55 mile pilgrimage route, from St Olaf’s Wynd to the Cathedral, at 17:15.
A short piece of dialogue between Magnus and Haakon, written by Ron Ferguson, is incorporated in the Cathedral service, providing a moment of forgiveness and reflection and is a fitting conclusion to this special year.
The doors to the cathedral will open at 16:45. The Kirkwall City Pipe Band and Orkney Pilgrimage Group will parade from St Olaf’s Wynd to the St Magnus Cathedral on Broad Street at 17:15 with the tree lighting taking place following the procession of St Lucy and the service in the cathedral.
The evening before (Friday 8 December) the Orkney Norway Friendship Association dinner dance will take place at 19:30 at the British Legion in Kirkwall. Tickets are £20 and available from the Orcadian Bookshop in Kirkwall or Wisharts, Stromness.
On the evening of Sunday 10 December at 20:00 there will be a free concert in St Magnus Cathedral, with music by the Mayfield Singers, members of Hadhirgaan from KGS, and visiting Norwegian musicians.
A morning service and Grimstad tree lighting will take place earlier that day in the cathedral at 11:15.