01 Jan 2015
Bus drivers from a Teesside bus depot have raised hundreds for charity by spreading some Christmas cheer as they drove their buses during the run up to Christmas.
Drivers at local bus operator Stagecoach North East dressed as Father Christmas and Scrooge, bringing a smile to the faces of young and old passengers alike and encouraging them to dig deep for their chosen charities. This year, passengers showed generosity in their hundreds, with staff collecting £965 for Teesside Hospice.
Bus driver Darren Wardle, 45, from Billingham, said: “Teesside Hospice is a wonderful cause working so hard in our local community and we are very proud to have helped them in this way. We would like to thank our passengers for supporting us and giving as generously as they did on their travels and hope we made their journey a little more fun and festive.”
During their shifts additional bus drivers from the company’s Teesside depot handed out gifts such as rock sweets, miniature reindeer and snowman bugs with a Christmas message to help make the journeys for passengers even jollier.
Kim Bradley, Community Fundraiser at Teesside Hospice, said “We’re so grateful for the support we’ve received from Stagecoach! It is only with the support of businesses like them who make it possible for us to raise the £4,900 needed each day to care for local people with advanced cancer and other life limiting illnesses”.She added “Thank you to all the public for getting into the Christmas spirit and kindly donating on their bus journey!”
Nathan Stanislawski, Operations Manager at the Teesside depot, said: “We are always happy to support our drivers in their fundraising efforts and would like to commend them on their dedication to making a difference during the festive period. I’d also like to thank all our passengers and the rest of the depot for giving so generously. Seeing Santa Claus driving the buses puts a smile on everyone’s face and is great fun for all involved.”
Across the six Stagecoach depots, staff raised an impressive £19,315 for various charities over the festive period, which included a donation for each depot from Stagecoach North East.
In a separate donation, an additional £1,000 was presented to the hospice as part of a community award won in December 2014. After receiving a gold award at the 2014 Stagecoach Champions Awards for its community fundraising, employees from the depot received a cheque for £1000 for their efforts and decided to donate the cash prize to Teesside Hospice.
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