This is what its all about . It’s not only the spirit of Christmas but a real sense of well being and community spirit. I have visited the nativity pageant held every year on Orsett Pound for at least the last 15 years and it never fails to disappoint. But it’s been around a lot longer than that.
It’s all due to one lady as well. Jackie Firman, who recently retired as mine host at the Foxhound, tearfully remembers attending the first of the Thurrock nativity displays 52 years ago held in a bombed out house at the bottom of Grays Hill.
She remembers that the closing part of the ceremony involved all the children from the nearby convent school dressing as children from all over the world which probably you’d struggle to do so today.
Then 44 years ago she decided to organise Orsett’s first nativity and with only a couple of exceptions the villagers dutifully attend every year.
In more recent times Jackie asked for help in running the event and was overwhelmed with the response. The excellent people of Orsett in Bloom rose to the challenge. Local businesses offered support and the event is now secure in the minds of villagers hopefully for ever more.
What pleases Jackie the most is that the children of those pioneers 40 years ago, and their grandchildren, have carried on a tradition that is a centrepiece of village life. You don’t have to have a religious bone in your body to enjoy this wonderful tradition.
Long may it continue