Hundreds turn out for Acorns Santa Run in Walsall

Hundreds of Santas and elves descended on Walsall Arboretum for the most festive fundraiser of the year.

Hundreds of Santas and Elves took part in the Acorns Santa run at Walsall Arboretum
Hundreds of Santas and Elves took part in the Acorns Santa run at Walsall Arboretum

The Santa Run saw families and four-legged friends come together dressed in Christmas-themed outfits to raise funds for Acorns children's hospice.

Despite the cold, wintery weather, runners and supporters kept smiling from start to finish.

Children and dogs weren't exempt from taking part in the race, with many of them kitted out in antlers, bells and costumes.

Kelly Anderson, aged 37 from Willenhall, said: "It's lovely to do something for a good cause, especially at Christmas when other families may be struggling.

Dave Westbury, from West Bromwich, dressed as The Grinch

"Normally, you'd never catch me running, but the festive theme makes it so much fun and it's great that the whole family can take part."

Participants ran, jogged and walked their way around the course before reaching the finish line where they were given a medal to commend them for their efforts.

Phil Knight, aged 52 from Aldridge, added: "When we heard that Acorns were in trouble a lot of people wanted to do something to help, which is why I signed up to do the run today as its for an excellent cause."

The fundraiser comes after the threat of immediate closure at Acorns in Walsall was lifted following an incredible response from the public.

The santas line-up as the run starts, with all money raised going to Acorns Children’s Hospice

Bosses confirmed the much-loved hospice would stay open beyond next spring as an appeal to save it, backed by the Express & Star, raised more than half a million pounds.

Despite the pressure being lifter, bosses have urged people to continue donating money needed to keep it running in future years.

It costs Acorns £27,000 per day to provide its vital care for life limited children and young people across Walsall and the West Midlands, and support for their families.

The charity relies heavily on fundraising by the community for the majority of this amount, making events like the Santa Run crucial for raising funds.

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