Life-size knitted nativity characters to visit Patchway church

The Knutty Knitters with their Knitivity scene.

A set of giant knitted characters from the nativity scene are due to pay a visit to a Patchway church this weekend, as part of a charity fundraising tour of Bristol.

The life-sized knitted Mary, Joseph, shepherds, kings and sheep, produced by a group called the ‘Knutty Knitters’, will be at Holy Family RC Church on Saturday and Sunday (1st/2nd December).

The ‘Knitivity’ scene has been created in memory of Christine Walsh, a founding member of the Knutty Knitters, who died of bowel cancer at St Peter’s Hospice last December, and the group are now raising money for the charity which cared for her by taking their creation on tour.

The knitters, made up of Alison Spurrell, Jean Richards, Anne Iles, Eileen Agnew, Pat Dardis and Julia Worth, all worked together along with Christine at St Teresa’s Catholic Primary School in Monks Park and started knitting together in their spare time.

Before Christine died, it was decided that the Knitivity would be their next project and the group have since decided to carry on and do it in aid of St Peter’s Hospice.

Alison Spurrell said:

“The Knutty Knitters began when we made a Royal Wedding themed project and raised a great amount for the primary school we used to work at. We enjoyed it so much we decided to make it a regular thing.”

“When we began the Knitivity project we adapted patterns given in a magazine and we had no idea how big the figures would turn out. It was a bit of a surprise when they turned out to be life-sized but they look fabulous!”

“We have been working on the scene since May and it’s been a great way for us all to get together. I’ve lost count of how many balls of wool we’ve used and how much we’ve spent on materials but we really want to thank the friends and family who have helped with the cost.”

“We’re really looking forward to taking our work on tour around Bristol. We hope people enjoy it and it would be fantastic to give something back to the charity that did so much for our friend.”

Alison continued:

“The care Christine received from St Peter’s Hospice was fantastic for her and the family. They made a very difficult time a lot more manageable. Christine’s daughters fundraise for the hospice so this is our way of helping out too.”

Christine Walsh died on 20th December 2011 at St Peter’s Hospice in Brentry. She previously used the day hospice facilities before spending the last days of her life at the hospice.

St Peter’s Hospice is Bristol’s only adult hospice. Services are provided free of charge, but the NHS contribute just 23% of the £6.5 million needed to run the hospice yearly, meaning support from the public is essential.

Last year the hospice cared for 2,675 patients and supported over 6,000 family members including children.

Petra Vesela community fundraiser at St Peter’s Hospice said:

“We love it when people put on really unique fundraisers to help support us. The amount of time and effort these ladies have put into this project is phenomenal and we couldn’t be more grateful.”

“The money raised is essential for us to continue our work helping people like Christine in Bristol.”

For a full list of where the tour will stop and for up-to-date pictures of the Knitivity please visit

The Knitivity returns to the Patchway area later in December, as follows:

  • 12th – 14th December at Holy Family Primary School, Stoke Lodge
  • 21st – 24th December at ASDA, Cribbs Causeway

To donate to Alison and the Knutty Knitters please visit

One comment

  1. Holy Family RC Church raised £172 for St Peter’s Hospice through a collection made during the visit of the knitivity.

    Over £300 was raised when the knitivity visited Holy Family RC Primary School later in December.

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