Nothing quite gets you in the festive spirit more than a caravan of camels strolling down a church aisle to a jolly rendition of ‘Ding Dong! Merrily on High’. That was one of the highlights of our Carols by Candlelight evening, which took place at St John’s Church in Devizes earlier this month (Thursday 2 December).
Bactian camels at Carols by Candlelight

Dressed in festive attire with all the tassels, the trio of Bactrian camels were kindly provided for the evening by their owner, the Countess of Chichester. Led through the church by her talented team of camel handlers, the camels – Temujin, Ivan and Luna – brought smiles and joy with their parade.

The heart-warming event also featured special readings from children and families cared for by Julia’s House, and carol performances from St Joseph’s Primary School and White Horse Opera.


More than £2,000 was raised in total from the fundraising evening, which was sponsored by Awdry Bailey and Douglas Solicitors.

Evie and Tracey

Claudia Hickin, Community Fundraiser for Julia’s House, said: “It was so wonderful to celebrate the start of Christmas with our Carols by Candlelight event again this year. Even though we had to keep guest numbers lower than before the pandemic, it was still a magical atmosphere on the night – and the camels were as magnificent and beautiful as ever. We’re really thankful to the local community for their generous donations at this event and also throughout the year. Without their support our vital care just wouldn’t be possible.”

White Horse Opera

Julia’s House children’s hospice provides a lifeline of care for families of the most seriously ill children in your community.

We're almost entirely funded by donations and have this year launched our Together We Care Appeal to raise the £1.5m needed each year to keep our vital community and hospice service going in Wiltshire.