Winslow Rotary donates Santa Float money to local community groups

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The Rotary Club of Winslow distributed checks to community groups in local villages, from funds raised by its Santa Float.

The Winslow Rotary Santa Float has visited Winslow and surrounding villages every Christmas for the past 30 years.

Each year the float is operated in Winslow by club members and in the villages it is operated in conjunction with volunteers from those villages.

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Left to right: Andrew Benfield from Grendon and Edgcott Scout Group, Michael Burrage from Twyford C of E School, Neil Smith, Rotary President from Winslow, James Sheriff from Grendon School, Arch Dancer from North Marston PTA, Darren Rothwell from Calvert Green Community Association, Tracey Benton from Marsh Gibbon Pre-school, Sarah Sweet-Rowley from Autism Early Support Trust, Pat McSweeny from 1st North Marston Brownie Unit, Chris Hooper from The Little Horwood Trust, Kate Edgar from The Claydons PCC

And every year, the profits are distributed to the corresponding charities in the village.

Christmas 2021 was a bumper year, with collections totaling over £9,000, and checks were presented to village representatives at a ceremony at the Bell Hotel on Tuesday 15 February.

Winslow Rotary President Neil Smith presented checks to 11 organizations from nine different villages.

Marsh Gibbon – £425 for preschool;

The Claydons – £500 for East Claydon church lead replacement;

North Marston and Granborough – £525 for school and £525 for Brownies;

Calvert Green – £625 for the conversion of a red telephone box into a community library;

Grendon and Edgcott – £475 for scouts and £475 for school;

Twyford – £765 for the creation of a school sensory garden;

Little Horwood – £625 for play area upgrades and conversion of a bus shelter into a community library.

Autism Early Support (formerly The Puzzle Centre) and Middle Claydon-based nursery Circle Center also received a check for £2,200 – much of the money raised in the town of Winslow itself.

This donation will allow the purchase of new laptops and headsets so that the charity can continue to develop its services and provide updates on the progress of parents at the crèche.

Rotary President Neil Smith said: “Santa Float is one of the best things we do – we’ve raised nearly £65,000 in the last 10 years alone.

“As well as raising a lot of money for local causes, the float provides enormous fun for children and adults alike.

“But it only works thanks to the generosity of the people of Winslow and the surrounding area.

“We would like to say a huge thank you to everyone.

“And I promise we’ll be back next Christmas!”

Further information on Winslow Rotary and its activities can be viewed here on the club’s new website.

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