Portsmouth, 18th December 2018:

Christmas for most families may be about time with family, Christmas Carol and Christmas services, and presents. But for many people and families here in Portsmouth, Christmas can be a difficult and lonely time. 

The ‘Christmas Stars’ tree in the crossing of Portsmouth Cathedral

The ‘Christmas Stars’ tree in the crossing of Portsmouth Cathedral

One of the ways Portsmouth Cathedral is helping families this Christmas is through ‘Christmas Stars’.  Any visitor can pick up a star ornament and write a message in memory of a loved one.  The special tree in the Welcome area of the Cathedral can then be decorated with the star.

There are other ways for families to help remember a loved one throughout the year.  Portsmouth Cathedral has also launched a new campaign to help families by offering a unique way of remembering a loved one who lit up their lives, by lighting up the Cathedral Tower on the day of your choice.  As well as Christmas, birthdays or anniversaries of a death, can be a tough and poignant time for many. Often, families want to mark that time quietly on their own, or perhaps might visit a grave or cemetery, and bring flowers and share memories.

The Portsmouth Cathedral tower is a famous landmark and can be seen from around Portsmouth and the seafront.  The tower is also one of the first parts of the iconic Portsmouth skyline that people see when they come into the harbour by sea.  The tower has been lit on several occasions to help promote public awareness campaigns about health issues including dementia and cancer. 

Canon Peter Leonard, Acting Dean said: “Christmas is a time of great joy for many but also a challenging time for some. The Cathedral is open all day every day from now until Christmas and as well as a place of quiet memories, it’s also a vibrant place of carols and festive joy! We look forward to welcoming you whatever your reason for coming.”

Portsmouth Cathedral