Hundreds turn out for Hemel’s festive Santa Dash

A 12-week-old baby boy was the youngest fundraiser to take part in this year’s Santa Dash, which saw more than 300 people don festive suits and take to the streets of Hemel Hempstead on Sunday morning.

Dressed as Santas or reindeers they walked, ran or scooted the 2.5 mile course in aid of the Hospice of St Francis.

Hospice of St Francis Santa Dash 2012.

Hospice of St Francis Santa Dash 2012.

Hemel Hempstead MP Mike Penning has taken part in the event since it started and was delighted to see his neighbours from Herbert Street on the starting line this year.

Alongside the Herbert Street team was a three legged Santa, a duo on a festive tandem bicycle and 12-week-old baby Samuel, who was dressed as a tiny reindeer, with his family who were running in memory of their grandad Robert Christian.

Hospice of St Francis community fundraiser Emma Day, who helped organise the fifth Santa Dash, said “It is a fabulous festive fundraiser that is guaranteed to get everyone in the Christmas mood.

“We’ve got mini Santas, big Santas and even doggy Santas. Afterwards all the Santas had tasty mince pies, tasty treats and hot drinks”

But behind the festive fun there was a serious message.

She said: “The money raised whilst having fun really does make a difference to the care that we can offer to our patients at the hospice and in their homes. We are always amazed at how generous people are especially at this time of year and are very grateful,” said Emma.

Malcolm Hall took part in the dash with his family under the team name Deck the Halls.

They were doing it in memory of Malcolm’s wife Angela who passed away just three months ago at the Northchurch-based hospice.

He said “The hospice gave great care to my wife while she was there and we’re just trying to pay something back.

“We’ve managed to raise about £3,000 which is incredible, and I think she would be proud of us.”