On Friday 19th January the annual presentation evening for the Barnstaple and District Roundtable Santa Sleigh took place at the Barnstaple Rugby Club. Fifteen groups and worthy charities were presented with their cheques from Paul Fryer, Ash Thorne and the club’s Chairman, Jack Shortridge.

Paul and Ash highlighted, “We are immensely proud of what the group and the charity collectors have achieved and would like to thank everyone who has taken part in the Santa Sleigh. A special thanks goes to our sponsors, Tom Sandland and his team at Barnstaple Nissan for the loan of the e-power Nissan Qashqai, Mark Brend and the team at Taw Ford and Simon Smallridge at Smallridge Bros for the sponsorship for the fuel for the vehicle. Special thanks goes to Bruce Isaac and Simon Randall from Storage Space in Barnstaple in letting us store the sleigh over the Christmas season and finally The Voice who helped to promote the Santa routes across Barnstaple and the surrounding areas”.

Each year throughout December the members of the club with the support of collectors from worthy charities and good causes help to collect money covering every district of the Barnstaple and the surrounding area. This year the club raised £13,500 in total which is 17% up from the previous year.

The key charities helped this year include Children’s Hospice South West, North Devon Hospice, Care for Kids, Devon Air Ambulance, Chemo Hero, as well as supporting other worthy causes that make a difference in their communities from Barnstaple Rugby Club, North Devon Roller Derby, Tarka Starlightz, Petroc Adventure Sports, Taw Valley Hockey Club, K9 Focus, North Devon Hockey Club.

Paul and Ash go onto say, “Our biggest thanks go to the residents and people of Barnstaple and the surrounding areas in helping to make this possible through their generosity and support and we have already started planning for Christmas 2024 in making the sleigh even better for the people of Barnstaple.”

Roundtable has been going for over sixty years in Barnstaple area and it is targeted for young men between the ages of 18 to 45 who might be involved in services or trades and want to give something back to their local community and have fun and fellowship at the same time. They are always on the lookout to recruit new members. If you are interested, email Barnstaple Roundtable.