Bus driving Santas take to the road for Alice House Hospice

Hartlepool bus passengers are finding themselves being driven to their destination by a new festive addition, as Santa and his little helpers take the driving seat for Stagecoach North East’s annual Christmas fundraising campaign.

Everyone loves Santa Claus and I think it has become a part of the build-up to Christmas in the community. It’s just good fun and certainly gives a great atmosphere on the buses.

Busdriver and ‘Santa Claus’ Keith Bagguley

Throughout December, bus drivers from Stagecoach NorthEast’s depot in Hartlepool are swapping their uniforms for festive costumes in a bid to raise money for Alice House Hospice, which provides palliative care to adults with life-limiting and terminal illness.

Alice House Hospice exists to ensure people affected by a life-limiting illness or the death of a loved one have the care, comfort and support they need. As the only adult Hospice in the Hartlepool and East Durham areas of the UK, its unique range of services make a vital difference to the lives of thousands of families each year.

To bring seasonal cheer, staff will also be handing out festive novelties, hoping to raise funds for the popular local charity. The team can be seen driving around the town in festive wear throughout December, hopefully attracting plenty of attention and donations from passengers and the public.

Busdriver and ‘Santa Claus’ Keith Bagguley said: “Every year the response from the public is really positive, it’s fantastic. Everyone loves Santa Claus and I think it has become a part of the build-up to Christmas in the community. It’s just good fun and certainly gives a great atmosphere on the buses. We are collecting funds for Alice House Hospice as it’s a charity on our doorstep and it was a natural choice for us.”

‘Elf’ and fellow bus driver Wendy Fletcher, also known as Santa’s Little Helper, added:“Getting dressed up really cheers people up and brings a smile or even a laugh, which is nice at this busy and sometimes stressful time of year. I really want to say a big thank you to everyone who supports us, as it is really their generosity which makes the difference.”

Greg Hildreth, Hospice Fundraiser said:“We are delighted to have the support of Stagecoach drivers and passengers this Christmas – this is a great way to raise funds at Christmas and I’m sure it will brighten up people’s journeys. We would like to say a big thank you for nominating AliceHouse for this and all of the money raised will be used to support local families.”

Shaun Anderson, Assistant Operations Manager at Stagecoach North East’s Hartlepooldepot, said:“This has become a popular feature on our buses over the years and the drivers and staff really enjoy spreading some seasonal cheer for our customers. We are always happy to support the fundraising activity of our team and hope that with the help of our passengers we can raise some much-needed funds for Alice House Hospice.”

For further information about Stagecoach North East please visit www.stagecoachbus.com

  • Registered charity No. 510824
  • Company No. 1525658
  • © Alice House Hospice 2019

Hartlepool Hospice Ltd (known locally as Alice House Hospice and formerly Hartlepool & District Hospice)
Registered office: Alice House, Wells Avenue, Hartlepool, TS24 9DA.