Clapham Common invaded by 2,800 Santas

A sea of Santas jingled their way around Clapham Common to raise money for Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity on 4 December.

More than 2,800 festive fun runners sported their finest Santa suits on Clapham Common yesterday to raise money for Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity.

The south London park transformed into a winter wonderland, playing host to a sea of Santas who took on the 5k or 10k course to help raise money and make a difference to seriously ill children from across the UK.

Many different Santas took part including hospital staff, patients and families of all ages and abilities who walked, jogged and wheeled their way through the chilly conditions. With yuletide fun including a snow machine, brass bands and carol singers, the event was the perfect pre-Christmas warm up in aid of a fantastic cause.

“It was fantastic to see over two thousand Santas running through Clapham Common today to raise money for GOSH,” said Tim Johnson, Chief Executive of Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity. “To see so many people put on their running shoes and Santa suits was wonderful – we’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has taken part and who is raising money to help seriously ill children from across the UK.”

Mia's story

Five-year-old GOSH patient Mia was the special guest of the day. Mia, from Palmers Green, North London, was born with CHARGE syndrome, a rare genetic condition that can affect different parts of the body. She is deafblind and has difficulties with her balance but took on the Santa Dash challenge and officially began the race by sounding the starting klaxon, witnessing thousands of red suits cross the line.

Mia’s mum, Claire, said: “We signed up to The London Santa Dash because the hospital has done so much for Mia and we cannot thank them enough. We also stayed in parent accommodation, which the charity funds, so I know how important that is to families.

"Because of Mia’s balance, just walking across the room is a challenge, so the Santa Dash was a big adventure for her and we are so proud of her for taking this on. Mia is such a determined little girl that she has overcome her difficulties to learn to walk, run and climb, and we have all loved being part of this event.”

Funds raised from the London Santa Dash will go directly towards the hospital’s most urgent fundraising needs including pioneering new treatments and research, providing cutting edge equipment and supporting the redevelopment of the hospital to provide state-of-the-art facilities to match the hospital’s world-class care.

Register your interest now for the London Santa Dash 2017.