The spirit of goodwill was alive and well in Buckingham on Christmas Day when 94 people sat down for a traditional Christmas dinner and entertainment served up by volunteers from the town’s churches.
Every year, Churches Together In Buckingham put on a free lunch for people who would otherwise be alone on Christmas Day.
And every year, more people attend, and more people volunteer their help to make the event a success.
This year, there was a 50 per cent increase in the number of people attending, and the lunch was voted the best ever.
The community centre was transformed with festive decorations and the food was prepared and cooked by professional chef Wil Wilson and his wife, Donna, who once again gave their time as a contribution to the community.
Organiser Annie Lake said she was delighted with the number of people from all parts of the community who volunteered their time to make the event run smoothly, covering everything – from picking up and taking home those guests who needed it, to welcoming, hosting, serving, entertaining and washing up.
Hosts ensured every guest was looked after well during the afternoon, and Mayor of Buckingham, Ruth Newell, went from table to table talking to the guests and hosts. After enjoying the Christmas meal, the guests joined in singing some carols before receiving a gift bag from Father Christmas, who was accompanied by one of his elves.
But the biggest surprise present of the day came when two volunteers, who work at Waitrose, arrived with a cheque for £1,500 towards the cost of the event.