Photo gallery: 15ft knitted Christmas tree back on show at Norwich’s Forum

The 15ft knitted Christmas Tree on view at the Forum, to raise funds for John Grooms Court. MP Chloe

The 15ft knitted Christmas Tree on view at the Forum, to raise funds for John Grooms Court. MP Chloe Smith, left, with Ann Meijer, of the Friends of John Grooms Court, who first had the idea to knit a tree. Picture: Denise Bradley - Credit: copyright: Archant 2013

A 15ft knitted Christmas tree that was created by hundreds of talented people across the county is back on show at the Forum in Norwich - and visitors are being urged to show their appreciation by helping local disabled people.

The tree, which will be on display at the Forum until January 5 next year, was created in 2010 to raise funds for John Grooms Court residential care home in Sprowston Road, Norwich, which is home to 29 young disabled adults.

People were asked to knit squares and decorations to be hung together on a wooden framework to create the tree, and after an overwhelming response, 600 knitters created over 4,600 green squares for leaves and nearly 2000 tree decorations.

Knitting was sent from hundreds of women across Norfolk and beyond, and donations from as far afield as the USA.

Ann Meijer, whose daughter Catherine Meijer lives at John Grooms Court, came up with the original idea.

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She said: 'Since we created the tree we have raised about £10,000 for the residents. The tree was originally at the Forum for Christmas 2010 and it's great to be back.'

Norwich North MP Chloe Smith was also at the Forum today and led a charitable collection to raise funds for the care home and to recognise the hard work and dedication of the staff and trustees.

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She said: 'I have been working with Ann for many years to support John Grooms Court, and I was happy to give an hour to support their tireless work to improve and enrich the lives of their residents.

'What was also great was that many of the residents of John Grooms Court were at the Forum for the launch.'

In addition to today's launch, Sheila Ferguson of the '70s singing group The Three Degrees, who is currently starring in Cinderella at the Norwich Theatre Royal, will visit the Forum on Monday at 1pm to welcome back the knitted Christmas tree.

In previous years the tree has been displayed at the Hostry at Norwich Cathedral, St John's Roman Catholic cathedral in the city, the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, and at the knitting and stitching exhibition in Harrogate.

For anyone who cannot visit The Forum but would like to support John Grooms Court, which is run by national disability charity Livability, donations can be made to The Knitted Christmas Tree, John Grooms Court, 215 Sprowston Road, Norwich, NR3 4HX. Cheques should be made payable to: Livability John Grooms Norwich.

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