Brighton & Hove Buses’ Santa Bus has hit the quarter-of-a-million-pound mark fundraising for the Martlets hospice and The Argus Appeal. The bus has been running for 15 years and has become a real fixture in the Christmas calendar for families and communities in the area.
Santa made his first foray into Brighton and Hove at the end of November on our famous bus with a menagerie of colleagues dressed as elves, Christmas trees, snowmen and reindeer in tow.
Children rushed out to greet Santa and get their activity packs and stickers while their parents threw money into collection buckets as the bus travelled around Goldstone, Hangleton and Downs Park and covered almost the entire city.
It’s a real team effort, with every department getting involved: drivers, engineering (9600 lights had to be attached to the bus!), ops, schedules, customer services, marketing, schedules, One Stop Travel and Mark Somerford popped down from Go-Ahead. Graham and Bassey the dog from Guide Dogs were also involved.
The Santa Bus visits more than 200 streets across 20 nights until December 19 and it’s one of our biggest fundraising events of the year. Other local companies also volunteer and collect on other nights, including Legal and General, Lloyds, and Brighton & Hove City Council. We welcome any enquiries from companies or community groups who would like to be involved in spreading Christmas cheer and supporting our local charities next year. Please contact our Accessibility and Communities Manager, Victoria Garcia: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Santa Bus has also been busy taking children from Brighton’s special schools, like Downside and Hill Park, to several Christmas parties this year, including a visit to the Sea Life Centre.
Last week, children from St Paul’s Primary School got on the Santa Bus and we filmed a video of the children signing Christmas songs and signing them in Makaton while we travelled around the city. The video will be part of our awards’ submission to the UK Bus Awards’ community award next year.