COACHES from all over the country descended on Brighstone at the weekend as the village celebrated its 23rd annual Christmas Tree Festival.

Around 250 themed Christmas trees were on show at eight different venues in and around the village, which was packed for a variety of special events.

Organiser Chris Goodman said: "It was a fabulous weekend with coaches coming from as far away as Yorkshire, South Wales and Kent to visit.

"There were several stand-out events which come to mind including The Light up a Life Service which opened the festival on Wednesday.

"The schoolchildren's carol concert in the Methodist Church on Thursday was an absolute joy, when 38 children sang and danced and put on a wonderful performance.

"The Christmas Carol play performed in North Street on Saturday and Sunday was also brilliant.

"Ivan Rendall was superb as Scrooge and the production by Chris Briggs, which included all local people, was brilliant.

"Then the Stars of Wonder concert in St Mary's Church on Sunday evening was a musical extravaganza."

The Light up a Life Service was held at St Mary's Church and was attended by IW Lord Lieutenant Susie Sheldon, High Sheriff Geoff Underwood and IW Council Chairman, Cllr George Cameron.

Nigel Hartley, CEO of Mountbatten, switched on the lights and also thanked the wonderful continued support of the Island.

There are three more charity concerts at St Mary's over the next week to round off the festival.

On Thursday, December 12, the West Wight Christmas Choir will sing in aid of Dementia UK and Admiral Nurses at 7.30pm.

Then on Sunday, December 15, the Sandown and Shanklin Military Band will perform in aid of the ABF Soldiers charity at 3pm.

The festival finale will next Friday, December 20, when the Harmonix Choir and Brighstone Barnacles will finish off the celebrations.

Don't forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.