Clitheroe illustrator creates spectacular Christmas window displays for festive charity trail

A gifted Clitheroe illustrator has pulled out all the stops to create stunning window displays for businesses in Clitheroe in order to raise money for a cause close to her heart.

Lucie Cooke, who lives in Clitheroe, has transformed shop fronts into magical and unique seasonal scenes helping local businesses get ready for Chrstmas and to create a fundraising trail challenge for people to complete.

There are 24 businesses involved in total and the aim of the fun-filled trail is to raise money for Young Epilepsy after Lucie's three-year-old son, Beau, was diagnosed with the condition over the summer.

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Lucie, a former pupil of Clitheroe Royal Grammar School, has been illustrating windows for almost two years now. She is keen to raise awareness and funds for Young Epilepsy - a charity working exclusively on behalf of children and young people with epilepsy. She explained: "Beau began having absence seizures at 18 months old and they gradually increased in length and frequency to him having over 50 on a bad day.

One of the stunning window displays created by Lucie

"He is now on medication and we are hopefully on the way to being seizure free. He has had 2 EEGs and an MRI to reach his diagnosis. The most traumatic times of our journey have been when he has been sedated. Both times he really fought it and got extremely distressed, he was only two-years-old so didn’t understand what was happening. Young Epilepsy are behind a new development in diagnosing epilepsy that is a wearable, movable system called OPM-MEG. It allows the child to move around whilst wearing a helmet, rather than being restrained in a chair or sedated."

She added: "Raising awareness of Young Epilepsy is important because not a lot of people know how much of a wide ranging condition epilepsy is. There is still a secrecy and a stigma attached to it, yet a surprising number of people live with the condition. It is important to us that Beau grows up with no shame, secrecy or embarrassment about his epilepsy. He may grow out of his seizures, he may not, but we will always be open and honest about everything, to teach him to be the same."

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Lucie, who has worked in the design industry for over 12 years, five of those as a self employed designer-illustrator, went onto say: "The idea for the festive trail competition came from being asked by a number of people, throughout the year, for lists of current places with my artwork so that they could do their own art trail. Since advertising the Christmas trail, I have already had quite a bit of interest!"

The also former pupil of Pendle Primary School explained how people can take part in the trail and raise money for charity. To take part in the competition, people can buy the maps from Anderton Bosonnet Estate Agents, Violets Cafe & Deli, Raffia and Salon one30 for a suggested donation of £1. The maps are available until Christmas Eve.

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Lucie and her three-year-old son, Beau

She said: "There are no prizes, it is just a bit of fun. Once you have your map you can do the trail whenever you like, on your own route and at your own pace. Having a toddler, I know they don’t always work to the time frames you want them to, so I wanted to make it as flexible as possible. There is a candy cane hidden in each window featured, once you’ve found it, you tick that one off on your map.

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"In addition to the fundraising, I’m hoping the trail brings a lot of fun and a major boost to Clitheroe high street and all the shops and businesses involved."

Spectacular window displays by Lucie
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The festive scenes are proving a hit on the high street