RESIDENTS in the Arboretum will be lighting up the winter night with an innovative community project – believed to be the first of its kind in Worcester.

Almost 40 households, along with various community organisations will be contributing to a trail of light by placing illuminated artwork in their windows and gardens on Saturday, February 16.

There will also be light installations created by local artists in three public locations, including a floating artwork on the canal.

The event has been organised by resident Jane Moorhouse, who wanted to give her neighbours a reason to get out and do something, despite the cold weather and dark nights.

“We’ve got 40 different households involved who want to help brighten up those dark winter nights with their own artwork,” she said.

The social worker and former teacher formulated the idea with another resident after a chance meeting at a community art event last year.

“We got talking about some of the other community art events we’d been involved in elsewhere. She’s from Bristol and they do this sort of thing a lot there.

“We applied for a grant from the city council, which we were very lucky to get,” said Mrs Moorhouse, originally from Lincoln.

She went on to say one of the resident’s ideas is to turn their window into an aquarium, complete with fish.

Her husband Peter is an artist and a former graphic designer, but Mrs Moorhouse said she doesn’t have an arty background, and this is an event for everyone. “That’s the great thing about is, you don’t need to be a talented artist to get involved.”

There will be refreshments and maps available at the Baptist Church in Sansome Walk, which will be hosting a light labyrinth, treasure hunt and lighting up the spire.

There will also be light installations by the old swimming pool in Sansome Walk and an illuminated washing line and clothes in Westbury Pocket Park.

“During the winter, you don’t get out much to socialise,” said Mrs Moorhouse. “This is a good chance to meet the neighbours. We’ve usually got to have a reason to go outside in the winter.”

She described the Arboretum as a “diverse area” and this might further encourage different cultures to come together. It’s a really good way of integrating everyone.”

Asked if there will be another event next year, she said: “We will have to see how it goes this year – it’s been quite hard work. But, I suppose, it'll be easier a second time.”