Local artist celebrates Bedfordians’ festive front doors in her ’12 Days of Advent’ calendar

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A local artist has raised vital funds for St John’s Hospice in Moggerhanger by illustrating the festive front doors of 12 Bedford residents.

Inspired during her daily lockdown walks around the town’s streets, Sara Sayer had created a series of drawings of houses that had been decorated to celebrate everything from NHS carers to VE Day.

This led her to adapt the concept in the run-up to Christmas, inviting Bedfordians to bid to have a bespoke original illustration of their be-decked Christmas doors and windows.

So far she has raised £300 for the charity.

Each illustration was completed in exchange for a £25 donation to St John’s Hospice and the finished artworks will be revealed one by one on Sara’s instagram page from Saturday 12 December.

“During the first lockdown I was touched by the impact this creativity brought during a time that we couldn’t come together at all,” said Sara.

“It really brought a smile to my face and enabled that vital connection to the community that we were all craving.”

For the festive project, Sara photographed windows and doors and collated a story from each of the 12 participants.

Each house is then drawn in her unique, whimsical style and the final illustrations will be shared on Instagram along with the owners’ stories.

Anyone is able to donate to Sara’s GoFundMe page via this link.

Susie, the owner of one of the houses that Sara has illustrated, said, “I’ve known of the amazing work that the hospice does through the experience of friends and colleagues and have developed some links there through my charity role at work.

“I know that the current situation has made their work more challenging and am happy to make any contribution that I can.”

You can commission Sara to create a portrait of your house any time of the year, and if you’re looking for a Bedford-themed Christmas present, her range of prints and products featuring Bedford pubs and landmarks is available from her website.

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