Not only is Christmas a time of great excitement and celebration at Reaseheath, it has also been an opportunity for all students and staff to get involved in raising funds for our 2022-23 RAG charity, The Children’s Adventure Farm Trust (CAFT). The charity supports terminally ill, disabled and disadvantaged children in the North West.

The ’12 Days of Reaseheath’, held over the last few weeks of term, offered a packed programme which encouraged everyone to get into the seasonal spirit and kept RAG fundraising jingling. Our Student Life Team, ably supported by our fantastic Student Association, have a reputation for being creative when it comes to organising festive events – and this year they definitely came up with some merry and bright ideas.

These included:

  • A Yo Ho Hoedown (otherwise known as the Winter Ball) which attracted 500 party goers to the Student Bar to enjoy live sets from BBC Radio 1 DJ Dean McCullough and a further two DJs, tasty snacks from a pizza bar and the chance to try their stickability skills on a bucking reindeer
  • A Christmas themed charity horse show in which teams of equine students raced round two obstacle courses – one mounted and one on foot – against the clock. Teams were also awarded points for the best decorated pony or horse
  • Two carol services – a traditional and a more modern version – both officiated by our college chaplain Rev MC Chang
  • A tractor pull – always a big crowd pleaser – organised through our Academy for Land and Environment and particularly by Rachael Tuckey
  • A Santa dash round a 5K circuit of our lake and grounds for runners and walkers
  • An evening tour and scavenger hunt for families around our mini zoo
  • A winter themed quiz
  • A Christmas themed karaoke
  • A festive film night
  • Ten pin bowling
  • A seasonal photography competition
  • ‘Let it Glow’ social evening
  • A winter community project which included a Sunday litter pick and community home help of merry and bright activities
  • A collection for Nantwich Food Bank
  • A collection of toys for Leighton Hospital
  • And, as a fitting finale, a fabulous Christmas Fayre organised by our Foundation department which raised a significant contribution to our RAG fund. Multiple stalls offered a fantastic selection of Christmas gifts and treats including wreaths and table decorations by our floristry students, cakes and biscuits made by bakery and patisserie students, jewellery, books and tree decorations. Entry students served at a pop up coffee shop as part of their qualification and there was even a pen of calves from our farm to greet visitors.
  • Another big hit during the fayre was a ‘live’ Christmas Cake-Off which saw eventual winner Sarah Waddington, a teaching and learning coach, going head to head against a joint team of Payroll Manager Sam Straker and HR Learning and Development Business Partner Susan Poole. Both finalists decorated cakes which were judged on design, creativity, aesthetic appeal and how much they represented the ‘Winter Wonder’ theme.