Santa will ride again thanks to donations in Calne

SANTA will be able to visit children in Calne thanks to the kindness of several people and businesses who have offered new tyres for his sleigh.

The Calne Lions received about 20 calls after an appeal in last week’s Gazette for help to replace its ageing tyres.

Club president Amanda Venton said: “As soon as the paper was on sale the phone started ringing and it didn’t stop until Saturday. It was quite amazing – it made us feel very glad inside.

“We had three businesses and several individuals offering us cheques and some very kindly wanted to remain anonymous.”

As the first to offer, Mike Wood Tyres, of Devizes, will be providing new tyres, hopefully by the end of the week.

The Lions also received offers from Zebedee and Powley from Calne and Colin Viner from Lyneham.

For more than 20 years the sleigh has toured the streets of Calne in December with Santa at the reins to collect money from generous residents on behalf of the club.

It raises around £4,000 every year for people in need and community groups.

The club faced having to dig into its own funds to pay for the tyres, but now that money will be able to be donated to charity instead.

Calne Mayor Mercy Baggs, who was the first female member of the club when she joined 20 years ago, said: “The reaction from the public was fantastic and humbling, I was so touched they appreciate what we do.”

Fuel for the sleigh is paid for by White Horse Cars taxi service in Calne.

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