Women decorating church as fundraiser

St Paul's Church florist Penny Wallace (left) and assistant Val McMillan, both of Arrowtown, will be part of a small group of women who will celebrate the life of the church - which is more than 140 years old - with a Christmas-themed Celebration of Flowers and mini market this weekend, raising funds for the restoration of the church foyer. Photo by Tracey Roxburgh.
St Paul's Church florist Penny Wallace (left) and assistant Val McMillan, both of Arrowtown, will be part of a small group of women who will celebrate the life of the church - which is more than 140 years old - with a Christmas-themed Celebration of Flowers and mini market this weekend, raising funds for the restoration of the church foyer. Photo by Tracey Roxburgh.
In the past 140 years, many thousands of people have entered the historic St Paul's Anglican Church in Arrowtown and now its foyer floor is beginning to feel the effects.

Church florist Penny Wallace is one of eight women on the church flower roster who will decorate the interior of the tiny church in a Christmas theme this weekend, also raising money to fix the slumping foyer floor and reseal the walls, to stop the grass growing under them.

The church had been ''a really integral'' part of the Wakatipu community and was one of the most photographed buildings in the area.

It was thought to be one of the few times in the resort a church had been decorated as a fundraiser at Christmas.

The massive undertaking would be a collaboration between those on the church roster, using flowers from local gardens as well as two wholesale suppliers.

Large arrangements would feature on the altar, along with pew decorations, window canopies, wreaths and Christmas trees, she said.

Stalls would be set up on the church grounds, creating a ''mini Christmas market'', and the Queenstown Community Choir will perform on Saturday from 11am until noon.

The church would be open for viewing from 10am until 4pm on Saturday and Sunday.

There will be a gold coin entry fee and all proceeds will go towards the restoration project.