Wishing tree proves to be 'popular success' at alpaca farm

hanging tree

People are able to hang any wish they like on the tree. - Credit: Celeste Goschen

A wishing tree is proving to be a 'popular success' at an alpaca farm with young and old alike.

The Wilderley Wishing Tree project all started on Church Farm in Shipmeadow between Beccles and Bungay three years ago when one wish was placed on a tree by a family making a wish in memory of their grandma who passed away.

wishing tree

The Wishing Tree was established three years ago and has grown from strength to strength. - Credit: Celeste Goschen

The farm also hosts Unicorn Alpaca Walks.

Since then, the wishing tree project has grown from strength to strength attracting people from far and wide.

celeste goschen

Celeste Goschen, founder of the Wilderley Wishing Tree Project. - Credit: Submitted

Founder of the project, Celeste Goschen said: "Our Tree of Wishes was the idea of our chief volunteer, the wonderful Lucie Etheridge.

"She referenced a children's book she had loved as a child called 'The Magic Faraway Tree'.

"It had inspired Lucie's belief as a child in magical thinking.

wishing tree

Magical thinking is at the heart of the wishing tree. - Credit: Celeste Goschen

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"Her dream that we create our own wishing tree - where visitors wishes can be tied - has since become an indelible fixture of our Alpaca Walking experience.

"The Wishing Tree has been immensely popular with all our alpaca walkers, young and old.

"It gives everyone the opportunity to think about what they really want in life - big and small."

wishing tree

The messages vary in tone and nature. - Credit: Celeste Goschen

Celeste added that the tone of wishes varies and that there are exciting plans on the farm for the upcoming season.

"The wishes are touching, funny, sometimes sad, but always heart-warming," she said.

Whether it's for 'a dark pink skateboard', 'two Dumbo rats', a wish for 'lots of sharks' to 'world peace', all these wishes mean a lot to their ‘makers' manifested in words hanging from a fragile piece of string tied to a branch.

wishing tree

The wishing tree has become a special part of the farm. - Credit: Celeste Goschen

"Post-Covid, the majority of wishes took a different turn and became selfless; wishing health for all.

"During the World Cup, the wishes turned into hopes for a win, whilst during COP 26, wishes were far more environmental.

"We’ve planted hundreds of bulbs which we hope will put on a good show.

wishing tree

There are some exciting plans for the farm this year. - Credit: Celeste Goschen

We have lots of new animals for people to interact with including our new family of Meerkats as well as a beautiful rescue football-playing sheep, called Shaun.

"We'll have a joint exercise with A1 recycling; upcycling materials for a series of community art projects with a big exhibition at the end of the year."