02 Dec 2019
Canterbury’s annual Christmas bus has been unveiled by the Lord Mayor. This year the bus features a striking rear design showing the Lord Mayor himself in full regalia, bursting out from behind a cover of Christmas wrapping paper.
The bus promotes the Lord Mayor of Canterbury’s Christmas Gift Fund; a charity that helps people living in the Canterbury community who may be elderly, vulnerable or facing particular hardship.
The Lord Mayor, Councillor Terry Westgate, was joined by Stagecoach’s Managing Director, Joel Mitchell at the launch of the bus outside the council offices on Wednesday. Speaking at the launch the Lord Mayor said “Over the past few years my daughter has asked me on several occasions; ‘Dad, when are you going to be Lord Mayor of Canterbury? I just want to see your face on the back of a bus!’ I’m almost sure that was meant in a good way. However I am extremely delighted to say that this year, her wish has come true!
"We are immensely grateful to Stagecoach for helping us promote the Lord Mayor of Canterbury's Christmas Gift Fund, and for their unwavering support for the open-air carol concert which takes place every year in Rose Square with the Archbishop of Canterbury.”
Last year, thousands of people attended the carol concert which raised over of £5,000 on the night. The annual family occasion is a traditional part of Christmas in Canterbury and has been organised each year since 1952 by the local charity, The Lord Mayor of Canterbury’s Christmas Gift Fund.
With the help of volunteers, the charity delivers 500 festive parcels to elderly, disabled and lonely people as well as families and young people who need help at this special time of year.
This year’s Open Air Carols will be sung in Rose Square, Canterbury on Christmas Eve from 6.15pm with singing led by St Stephen’s Church Choir from the Primark balcony and music from the Salvation Army Band. The concert will be conducted by music teacher Lucy Gove from Simon Langton Boys’ Grammar School, who takes over the role from Grenville Hancox.
The Christmas bus can be seen on local Canterbury city bus routes until the end of the year.
The Lord Mayor of Canterbury, Terry Westgate (right) with Stagecoach Managing Director Joel Mitchell (left) at the launch of this year’s Christmas bus.