Travel businesses up and down the country have been getting into the festive spirit by helping make Christmas a little easier for people less fortunate.
First up, staff at Protected Travel Shops in Fleetwood and Cleveleys, in the northwest, launched a community initiative and collected enough contributions from local people to give gifts to 2,200 families this Christmas.
They filled boxes with toys, toiletries and food items – and even a new hairdryer – with all the donations going to the Salvation Army.
Cleveleys branch Manager Carly Cooper said: “The response was overwhelming. It was touching to see the community, including regular customers and passersby, contribute generously despite the tough times.”
Guests at the Advantage Travel Partnership’s first Big Celebration Lunch for three years donated more than 300 children’s gifts to the Salvation Army’s Christmas Present Appeal.
Major Sally Spry, Commanding Officer and Centre Manager of Hoxton Salvation Army, where the gifts were delivered said: “We hope these gifts will bring comfort and joy to many people who need our help throughout London at this time.”
Next, the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) raised £35,000 for Centrepoint through a prize raffle and auction at its annual Christmas charity lunch, which this year was held at Royal Horseguards Hotel in London.
Centrepoint Senior Corporate Business Development Manager Hannah Winter said: “We would like to say a huge thank you and congratulations to Pacific Asia Travel Association UK for their incredibly successful charity lunch. With an estimated 24,400 young people facing homelessness this winter, your fundraising will play a vital role in helping us to offer vulnerable young people a safe and happy future.”
At the event, Saga Travel Group CEO John Constable won the Outstanding Contribution award, while former PATA UK and Ireland Chairman Tom Nutley received the Fellowship of PATA award.
Meanwhile, cruise retailer ROL Cruise presented a donation of £8,000 to the Royal British Legion in support of its 2023 Poppy Appeal.
It brings the total raised by ROL Cruise for the Poppy Appeal to £30,000.
Laura Gibbs, Poppy Appeal Manager (Essex) of the Royal British Legion, visited the ROL Cruise office in Lexden, Colchester to accept the donation from Managing Directors Rosie Cairns and Sarah Wikevand.
Laura said: “The generous donation of £8,000 will significantly contribute to our Poppy Appeal, and we are deeply appreciative of ROL Cruise’s ongoing commitment to the welfare of our serving and veteran colleagues, and their families. Together, we continue to make a positive impact in the lives of those who have served our nation selflessly.”