Casting call for donkey to play role in walking nativity

PUBLISHED: 14:26 06 December 2019 | UPDATED: 15:45 06 December 2019

A donkey in the sun at the Aylsham Show 2019

A donkey in the sun at the Aylsham Show 2019


The hunt is on for a dramatic donkey to play the starring role in a walking nativity.

Rev Andrew Whitehead. Picture: David BaleRev Andrew Whitehead. Picture: David Bale

Team vicar, the Revd Andrew Whitehead, has organised the event which takes place annually in the village of Cawston, based between Aylsham and Reepham.

For four years, it has been a dream of his to incorporate a real life donkey into the parish church's popular festivity but so far he has been unsuccessful.

He said: "The walking nativity is now a firm fixture in Cawston's Christmas calendar. It's so much fun for everyone to get involved and even the adults seem to like dressing up, and it's great to take the story of Christmas out onto the streets.

"This year we've tried really hard to bring together a stable scene at the pub, and we have some live animals already booked, but the one thing we lack is a donkey.

Cawston's walking nativity 2018. Picture: SUPPLIED BY CAWSTON PARISH CHURCHCawston's walking nativity 2018. Picture: SUPPLIED BY CAWSTON PARISH CHURCH

"Do you know someone who could help?"

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The event, which takes place on Sunday, December 15, gives participants a chance to dress up as their favourite character from the nativity story.

They will take a walk through the village and call in at local pub The Bell to see if there is any room at the inn, where they may enjoy a drink or two.

Cawston Parish Church. Picture: SUPPLIED BY RED ANDREW WHITEHEADCawston Parish Church. Picture: SUPPLIED BY RED ANDREW WHITEHEAD

The walk will finish with a stroll around St Agnes' Church before heading inside for carol singing. This year, the Cawston Primary Academy Choir will be joining in.

Mr Whitehead added: "In what's now become a village tradition, the people of Cawston will be walking the streets wearing dressing gowns, improvised angel wings and tea towel head-dresses as they take part in a very special walking nativity.

"The idea of the event is simply to reenact Mary and Joseph's journey to Bethlehem, and to have some fun along the way.

"If you have a costume, feel free to wear it. If you need to borrow one, we'll find something that fits you. Come and join the fun."

- To find out more about the church's Christmas events or to offer the services of your donkey, visit the Cawston Parish Church Facebook page or contact Mr Whitehead on 01603 872236.

- The walking nativity starts at Cawston Primary School at 10.30am, and will be followed by a walk around the village while singing, mince pies at The Bell, and concluding with a service at the church.

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