Santa Express arrives early for Rainbows kids
The Santa Express arrived early for youngsters at Rainbows hospice – and it was laden with toys, thanks to the Great Central Railway and warm-hearted supporters.
The steam railway called in at the hospice, which supports youngsters with life-limiting conditions, bringing a touch of special Christmas magic.
The toy delivery comes after the heart-breaking theft of gifts last month (November) collected by the railway and destined for youngsters at Rainbows and the Children’s Ward at Leicester Royal Infirmary.
Great Central Railways Michael Stokes said: “After the disappointment of the theft the response from companies and the public has been amazing. We have been able to replace all the toys stolen – and more – and deliver presents to Rainbows and the Leicester Royal Infirmary. It restores your faith in human nature.”
Staff delivered 120 presents to the Loughborough-based hospice. But the Railway has also invited Rainbows youngsters and their families to board ‘Santa Special’ train on the Steam Railway, when they will be handed additional gifts by Santa himself on 20 December.
Andrew Ball, Supporter Relations Director, said: “We are so very grateful to the public and our friends at Great Central Railway for keeping Christmas on track, despite the earlier theft of toys. It is a very happy ending to the story and will put smiles on faces.”
The hospice charity supports youngsters and their families across the East Midlands when they need it most.
Rainbows Hospice has just launched its Christmas Appeal to put more smiles on faces and make memories for youngsters whose lives are too short. To donate and add to the magic visit rainbows.co.uk/appeal