A Hull shopping centre got their festive activities off to a great start - all in the name of charity.
The opening of Princes Quay’s annual Santa’s Grotto coincided with Viking FM and Magic 1161’s Cash For Kids’ Mission Christmas, which will ensure that no child in East Yorkshire and Northern Lincolnshire goes without this Christmas.
As one of the main sponsors of the campaign, Princes Quay was the perfect setting for the launch of Mission Christmas and stars of Viking FM’s Breakfast Show, Jim and Rosie, headlined the morning’s events alongside Magic 1161’s Darren Lethem. Viking FM’s Weekend Breakfast presenter, Chris Johnson, also took to the stage straight from the studio.
Speaking on behalf of both stations, Darren Lethem said: “What a morning! Great to see so many people turn out for the launch of Mission Christmas and it was fantastic to have so many gifts dropped off by shoppers at the event.”
As well as activities on stage, Viking FM and Magic 1161’s Cash For Kids also led a parade of volunteers, Disney characters and a live pipe band from their starting point at Hull New Theatre, around the city centre and into Princes Quay.
Centre Manager and regular fundraiser, Tony Wilkes, led by example by donating £1,000 to the charity, which was made up of £500 raised from his own charity running activities and a further £500 donated by retailers in the shopping centre.
That was not all. Tony also donated two huge parcels, on behalf of the team at Princes Quay, each filled with over a thousand toys which will go directly towards giving local children a Merry Christmas this year.
Shoppers were treated to live entertainment from the Viking FM and Magic 1161 team as well as a special guest appearance from Santa Claus himself. Cash For Kids mascot, Courage the Cat, was also on hand to pose for photographs with children as they waited patiently for the grand opening of the Hobbit themed grotto.
As if by some sort of Christmas miracle, it started snowing inside the shopping centre just as the parade arrived, led by the Scotch Guards.
People wanting to donate toys to the Mission Christmas toy appeal are being urged take them to the many drop-off points around the region. Details of where the drop-off points are can be found on the Viking FM and Magic 1161 websites at www.vikingfm.co.uk/missionchristmas or www.magic1161.co.uk/missionchristmas