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Wednesday, 23 April 2014

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Keeley’s baby in a Carlisle manger

At most Nativity plays a doll takes centre stage as the Baby Jesus – but at one Carlisle performance they try to have a real baby every year.

Nativity photo
Keeley Pattinson sleeps through the leading role watched by Mary, who was played by Phoebe Chandler, and Joseph, played by Joel Moore

Youngsters at the Wigton Road Methodist Church Parent and Toddlers Group were very excited yesterday when four-month-old Keeley Pattinson took pride of place in the manger.

And proud mum Katie Armstrong, from Almery Drive, Currock, said: “If she is happy I am happy.

“She’s fine because she is sleeping.”

Keeley’s older brother, three-year-old Bradley Pattinson, was one of the wise men.

Joel Moore, who was four on Monday, played Joseph and mum Judith Moore, of Holmrook Road, was pleased that he had been chosen to take part. “It’s lovely for him and he is excited.”

Phoebe Chandler, three, played the part of Mary and her mum Lisa Chandler, from Hebden Avenue, said the fact that a real baby was part of the proceedings added to it.

Event organiser Lynda Donaldson said it was nice to put across the real message of the Christmas story.

She said: “The mums ask for it every year – it’s quite special.

“The children like to see a baby in the manger.”

The group has been going for the past 28 years and Lynda said: “I came to the very first one with my baby son and now I lead it.”

Money raised through weekly subscriptions is donated to the Smiles Foundation and they sponsor a six-year-old Romanian girl to help put her through school.

Lynda said: “I’ve been out to Romania myself and I’ve met her.

“When you see what children have here they are blessed.”

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