Special Christmas tree brings community together

Smeaton youngsters help decorate the tree. Pics by FPA
Smeaton youngsters help decorate the tree. Pics by FPA

A very special Christmas tree dubbed ‘The Tree of Hope’ has been planted in Smeaton.

And local residents, who have decorated it with personalised baubles, hope it will help bring some cheer to people in the area who are struggling over the festive season, for whatever reason.

Councillor Hamilton places a bauble on the Tree of Hope

Councillor Hamilton places a bauble on the Tree of Hope

The tree was planted for local man Brian Kerr who has been diagnosed with terminal cancer. Brian has always wanted to see a big Christmas tree for the local people to enjoy and to bring them together.

And when residents asked Fife Council if it could help out, it not only planted a large tree in front of the shops in Chestnut Avenue, but also put lights on it.

On Monday night the community got together around the tree, with dozens of local children, including Brian’s daughter Kameryn (11), decorating the tree.

Councillor Ian Cameron, who represents the area on Fife Council, said: “I was approached by Cllr Judy Hamilton and Vicki Lister the lady behind the bra campaign on the lamp posts at Smeaton.

“They told me of how a member of the campaign, Brian Kerr, was himself ill with cancer and that he had always wanted to see a community Christmas tree in Smeaton.

“It was vey late in the year to programme this in, but the area managers for transportation, parks and street lighting came together with a true community spirit and made this happen.

“It is a real tree which will grow with the community, and I see it as a focal point for the community to reflect on what can be achieved by coming together.”

Mrs Abada Akhtar of Premiere Stores in Smeaton said it had been “a lovely project” which had brought everyone together.

“Everyone knows someone with cancer or other illnesses and this brings a bit of hope to everyone living in the area,” she said.