HUNDREDS of children from across Oxfordshire are preparing to take to the stage for the Big Christmas Sing.

For the past five years, schools across the county have come together to sing their hearts out for the event, a Christmas fundraiser for Christian Aid.

This year, more than 400 youngsters from 17 primary schools will take part in the event at Oxford Town Hall, St Aldate’s, tomorrow and Wednesday .

Each school will have their own section, before a massed choir finale of Tree of Light and Good Time Christmas performed by all the children.

Among those taking part will be 34 children in Years Three to Six at St Francis Primary School, Horspath Road, Cowley, Oxford.

It is the third year the school has been part of the concert.

Music co-ordinator Lucy Sineman said: “Just being able to stand in front of a massive audience and be able to share what they have been doing, rather than just stood in a classroom singing, is a great reward for their hard work. The children are really excited and looking forward to getting into the Christmas spirit.”

She said it was particularly good for children who were good at music but not so strong in other areas of the curriculum to get their chance to shine.

Since the event began, it has raised more than £5,000 for Christian Aid.

Music will be co-ordinated by Liz Stock of the Oxfordshire County Music Service, and Christian Aid’s Jessica Hall will compere.

Parents, family, and friends will make up the audience, and there are still a limited number of tickets on sale.

Oxfordshire County Council cabinet member Melinda Tilley said: “This is the fifth year we have worked in partnership with Christian Aid to promote this event.

“The Town Hall is a lovely venue for it. Places were in great demand and sadly we were unable to accommodate all the schools who wanted to attend.”

Joining the choir from St Francis will be youngsters from Bayards Hill, St Andrews, Sandhills, All Saints, Windmill, Orchard Meadow and St Michael’s primary schools in Oxford, plus West Kidlington, Buckland, Shellingford, Watlington, Beckley, Manor School in Didcot, William Fletcher in Yarnton, South Moreton School and St Edmund’s in Abingdon.

Christian Aid regional co-ordinator Sarah Clay said: “The Big Christmas Sing is a great occasion for all the family and we’re very excited to be running it over two nights again this year.

“With all the hard work the children have put in, we are sure it will be a fantastic festive concert, and it will also raise money for a very worthy cause.”

  • A few tickets – at £4 for adults and £2 for children – are still available by calling 01865 740000.