First pictures of the stunning 18-foot Christmas tree unveiled at Temple Newsam House in Leeds

Over the centuries it’s hosted bumper banquets and king-sized Christmas get-togethers for Leeds lords and ladies who loved to celebrate.

Monday, 29th November 2021, 5:06 pm

And this week, the team at Temple Newsam House kept up five hundred years of festive tradition as they put the finishing touches to the mansion’s enormous 18ft-tall Christmas trees.

The stunning seasonal showpiece has gone on display in the house’s Great Hall, where staff have been busy hanging a huge collection of traditional baubles and decorations.

Over the coming weeks, the towering tree will play a central part in events at the estate over Christmas.

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Josh Turner and Michael Clarke decorating the 18' Christmas Tree in the Great Hall, Temple Newsam House (Photo: Bruce Rollinson)

A special family-friendly tree trail across the house and farm, featuring hand-crafted trees, will tell stories from the estate’s illustrious past.

The Great Hall was used for feasting and celebrating by the house’s residents and their guests, which has included some of the city’s most prominent aristocrats and their families.

Maya Harrison, principal keeper at Temple Newsam, said: “It’s always a mammoth task putting up the tree but everyone gets involved in and for all of us at the house, it’s the sign that Christmas has finally arrived.

“Each year we all pitch in and we’re very lucky to have such a dedicated team of staff and volunteers who help us get the tree looking extra special each year.

The towering tree will play a central part in events at the estate over Christmas (Photo: Bruce Rollinson)

“Temple Newsam has hosted Christmas celebrations for more than five hundred years now and we’re very proud to be keeping up such a long and auspicious festive tradition and to be helping all our visitors to get in the Christmas spirit.”

As well as following the tree trail, visitors will be able to cosy up by the roaring workshop fire at Home Farm and get up close to the animals before they bed down for the winter.

Santa Claus will also be stopping by the house to hand out gifts to those who have been good this year.

Councillor Jonathan Pryor, Leeds City Council’s executive member for economy, culture and education, said: “Christmas in Leeds is always such a magical time and it’s great to see our beautiful and historic locations helping to mark the season in such spectacular style.

Maya Harrison, principle keeper at Temple Newsam House, adds the finishing touches to the tree in the crimson bedroom (Photo: Bruce Rollinson)

“After such a challenging year, the city certainly deserves an extra special Christmas and I hope everyone is looking forward to celebrating.”

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