A giant advent calendar has been opening up each day of December as part of Bishop Auckland Town Team’s Advent Windows initiative.
24 schools and community organisations have made 24 life size models which have been revealed in 24 shops. The models have included 13 representations of the famous paintings of Jacob and His Twelve Sons by the Spanish artist Francisco de Zurbarán, housed in Auckland Castle.
They have all been cast as wise men, shepherds and other characters from the nativity. Other models include contemporary renditions of Joseph and Mary, an African Angel Gabriel and a lion and a lamb and other animals.
“We are aiming to make Christmas unfamiliar”, explained David Pott, the Advent Windows Coordinator. “We get used to how nativity scenes should be, but this will definitely be alternative – hence AlterNativity! There are a few traditional references, but we guarantee you will never have scene a nativity scene like this one!”
The life-size models will be paraded through the streets of Bishop Auckland on Christmas Eve. The Great AlterNativity Christmas Eve Parade begins at the Stan Laurel statue on the junction of Princes Street and Newgate Street at 10:30am.
It will then proceed via Newgate Street, the Newgate Centre, Fore Bondgate and the Market Place before finishing at St Peter’s Chapel in Auckland Castle at 11:30am where the AlterNativity scene will be assembled and the Bishop of Durham will unveil the last model.
The project is funded by Northern Heartlands through County Durham Community Foundation and other generous donors and is also supported by The Auckland Project. For more information contact David Pott on 07932 790525 or email firstname.lastname@example.org