Santa’s New Sleigh Helps Raise £2,000

After a huge effort from club members, the Deben Rotary Santa sleigh was refurbished in time to take to the streets in December and raise over £2,000 for charity.

As Christmas approached, Covid-19 was not the only potential problem that faced Deben Rotary as they started to organise their annual Santa sleigh runs around Martlesham, Wodbridge and Melton. After years of service, the sleigh itself was and badly in need of repair.

The club appealed to local businesses for help and received donations from Woodbridge 41 Club and an anonymous donor for repairs, while Bye Engineering carried out mechanical work free of charge. Thanks to this support and hours of work from club members, the sleigh was fully refurbished in time to welcome Santa as he took his place and joined club members on their visits around the local area.

The festivities started with a static visit to Woodbridge on December 12 and then Santa and club members visited streets in Martlesham and Melton over six nights, putting a smile on faces young and old and raising an amazing £2,000 as they went. The money has since been added to Deben Rotary’s charitable trust fund and will be distributed between worthy causes.

Richard Boother, President of Deben Rotary, said: “The club put in a huge effort to get the sleigh refurbished and out into the local community. I would like to thank our three very generous sponsors and club members and friends for putting around 600 hours into the refurbishment and the sleigh runs. I hope all those who saw it were pleased that we could get around. We were very thankful for people’s generosity and looking forward to doing it all again next Christmas!”

The Just Giving page is still open if anyone would like to donate. You’ll find the link on our website.

Like most charities, our fundraising is down on last year due to the cancellation of so many events. Consequently, we are working on new virtual ideas in the short term and some exciting projects for when we are free to meet up again.

We will be promoting all our meetings and fundraising events online. If you would like to join any of our meetings, please contact us and we will send you an invite. The club is always on the lookout for new members. If you are interested, please visit the website,uk for more details or contact Rotarian Ian O’Brien Baker: 01394 382419 /

This article runs in the February issue of the Martlesham edition, which you can read in full by clicking on Magazines.

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