As Cornwall sizzles in baking temperatures Truro Cathedral is relying on people planning ahead.
In the middle of a scorching July heatwave the cathedral has opened a Christmas shop.
Baubles, Christmas cards and nativity sets worth up to £450 are all on sale at the King Street store.
Cathedral bosses realise the decision may be a controversial one but are determined to increase their presence on the High Street and raise profits.
The Dean of Truro, the Very Reverend Roger Bush, said: “Some people will find this a difficult decision to understand. But the cathedral has to generate profits from its commercial arm - the shop and the restaurant - in order to help finance its core activities of worship, education and outreach and to help keep this beautiful building open.”
The cathedral has previously sold Christmas goods from the cathedral and directors say there is a real demand even in the middle of summer.
If the shop is successful then after Christmas the focus will switch to stocking Easter and Fairtrade items.
James Barker, the shop manager, said: “People seem to appreciate the quality of the traditional range of items we hold, our nativity sets always sell well. We are going to give it a go and see what happens.”
Neil Scott from the Truro Business Improvement District welcomed the move and said: “It may appear to be a bizarre decision to open a Christmas shop on one of the hottest days of the year, but I understand that some of the best trading months for the cathedral’s Christmas gift ranges are during July and August.”