A towering Cathedral Of Light is the dazzling showstopper on a new after-dark festive lights trail at one of the region's top visitor attractions.
Festooned with thousands of pea-lights and standing seven meters high, the walk- through tunnel of light in the shape of a cathedral window is a star turn at the first ever Christmas At Belton.
But there are many selfie stops with half a million lights on this mile-long multi-sensory walk, set to Christmas tunes, in the grounds of the National Trust's Belton House, near Grantham, in Lincolnshire.
BUY TICKETS: Christmas At Belton is now open selective dates to December 30. Tickets in advance are adult £17.50, child £12, family £56, under threes and carers free see christmasatbelton.com.
E- LEAFLET: For details, dates, prices, video, links and to book online also see our page turning E-leaflet guide - CLICK HERE.
This fairytale landscape wows with spectacularly lit installations by renowned international artists, including specially created Twelve Days Of Christmas sculptures made from Lincolnshire grown willow by local talent Alison Walling.
Singing trees, programmed to synchronise with music, an illuminated Flower Garden, a flickering Fire Garden, a state-of-the-art Laser Garden, a Dutch Garden Light Show and a Mistletoe Moment, inviting Christmas kisses on an oversized bench, are amongst the many highlights as the historic deer park is showcased like never before.
Among the internationally acclaimed artists are TILT, a French artistic studio, who playing with scale and light with Carbonium and Red Herbum as well as North East based pa-BOOM who have created a 700 square metre Fire Garden to warm and wow visitors.
Produced by events promoter Raymond Gubbay Limited, a division of Sony Music, in partnership with the National Trust, the trail is created by Culture Creative Limited who have seven similar installations around the country and have just opened one in Chicago.
Culture Creative’s Zoe Bottrell, the creative producer, explained how the venue's landscape offered a fantastic canvas to work create an attack on the senses - not just with light and sound, but with smells from food stalls featuring roasted hot chestnuts, marshmallows and mulled wine.
And she described the entrance - from Belton's courtyard via a huge wooden door - like a magical moment of fiction.
She said: "It's a bit like my The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe moment - when you go through a secret doorway and find yourself in a magical place, the most beautiful but formal garden, leading to all these brilliant installations, from the most primitive form of light, which is fire, to the very contemporary and jazzy Laser Garden. It's about lighting the landscape and understanding the things that we just take for granted that are sitting around us.
"We have some huge sculptures, between five and eight meters. Our signature piece is The Cathedral of light, seven meters in height at is opening and five and a half meters at its closing, to give a wonderful perspective as you go through it.
"As you exit that tunnel, the house will be in front of you, and in front of the house, there is the Dutch Garden, which will be our secret finale, which I'm not going to give away. But it will enable the landscape to come to life.
"It's a fantastic venue to be able to treat with our site specific installations - a fantastic canvas to work with and I'm really pleased with what the team has managed to achieve here.
"This is my homecoming. I was born and bred an hour or so away so it's great, on my travels. to spend a couple of nights at home with mum and dad."
She added: “Transforming the landscape at Belton took almost three weeks of round-the-clock work by our amazing team. We are working with award-winning sculpture artists from all over the world installing incredible immersive sets and scenes.
“We have taken inspiration from the creative women of Belton House, as well as the historic landscape creating a trail which showcases the formal gardens and parkland.
Belton House, a traditional English country home which sits in a 1300 acre deer park, featured in TV's Jane Eyre and Pride and Prejudice, is one of the UK's top 100 most visited attractions.
The estate includes a cafe, indoor play area, gift and second-hand book shops.It also boasts Lincolnshire’s largest outdoor adventure playground.
Siobhán Scullion, Visitor Experience Manager for the National Trust’s Belton House, said: “For the very first time our gardens at Belton have bee utterly transformed into a magical illuminated wonderland. We are excited to see the installations lit up for the first time and to see the property in a whole new light.
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