Friday, 19 December 2014
Tonight was one of the most extravagant huts we've seen this year and maybe in the whole history of the Beach Hut Advent Calendar. Not only was the hut decorated beautifully but the art experience extended across the seafront almost to the edge of the promenade.
Inside the hut 305 were tiers of paper houses made from a template produced by Mary and her team at the Metropolitan Church.
The theme was O Little Town of Bethlehem but this felt more like a city as giant cardboard houses were arranged outside the hut, each with its own light and crisply cut windows and doors. The children really enjoyed themselves dodging in and out of these houses that were perfectly child-sized but too small for adults.
In the midst of the circle of houses was a spiral path of light, arranged on a large square of astroturf. This formed a labyrinth and the children (and anyone else who wanted to take part) were encouraged wend their way into the middle of the spiral and collect a light in a glass and cary it with them to the outside.
Labyrinths are an ancient form of meditation and this version helped people to focus on reaching for the light inside ourselves in order to enlighten the world.
A choir sang a variety of carols during the hour that we were open and there was quite a crowd joining in, admiring the hut and getting involved with the singing.
The next hut is the first time we've ever been able to use a brick hut with all the facilities that this provides, in particular electricity. It's number 1a and is between The View and the King Alfred leisure centre.