It’s the time of year when you expect to see a man in a red suit with a white beard but get set to see hundreds of them.
Now in its seventh year, the Santa Dash in Windsor in aid of Alexander Devine Children’s Hospice is the annual festive fun run on Saturday, 24th November.
The dash will guide you through Windsor, along the Long Walk, the Castle, Queen Victoria’s statue and the town’s streets and it’s up to you how you decide to take on the 5km – dash, run, jog, skip or dance.
The entry fee includes a free Santa suit or reindeer antlers for children and a medal and every penny goes to the children’s hospice service in Maidenhead.
The hospice opened in 2018 after years of hard work and tireless campaigning to raise the funds by Fiona and John Devine. Their son Alexander was diagnosed with a brain tumour at the age of four and their lives became consumed by hospital appointments and treatments.
They sadly lost Alexander after four and a half years and through their experiences found there was a need for a children’s hospice in Berkshire.
Fiona and John wanted to provide a safe, loving environment for all that gives children and families a choice of care and support. The hospice complements the existing community service with state-of-the-art facilities. It has six children’s bedrooms, two-self-contained flats for families, a dining area, open plan sitting room and suite dedicated to end of life and bereavement care.
There is also a sensory room, creative learning zone, music room and hydrotherapy pool.
A woodland-themed sensory garden, mud kitchen, musical play pieces, scented plants and raised flower beds allow children to enjoy the outdoors.
There are LEGO models scattered around the garden and an adventure playground is currently being built designed with special equipment.
Nurses and nursery nurses, play and music specialists and counsellors and doctors use their knowledge, compassion and expertise to provide the support and care each family and child needs.
Santas are encouraged to raise at least £57 in sponsorship – this alone could pay for a specialist play session.
The dash starts at 9am, but dashers are encouraged to arrive at 8am for a briefing, to join the warm up and collect their Santa suit, these can also be collected in advance from this month with previous arrangement.
Registration is at Bachelors Acre at 8.40am before the run starts at the top of the Long Walk by the Castle.
Entry costs £20 adults, £7.50 children, under 5s free, family of four (2&2) £36.