Christmas came early for a group of local children when they were given a special sky-high invitation to meet none other than Father Christmas himself.
Around 150 children boarded a specially chartered Jet2.com plane that took off from Leeds Bradford Airport on December 2. We selected 60 of the children, together with Lineham Farm Children’s Trust (with both charities currently in the final stages of merging), for the experience, having supported the youngsters in the past.
We worked closely with Lineham Farm Children’s Trust, as well as A Day of Sunshine and, of course, Jet2.com to organise the festive experience, which, for many of the children, was the first time they’d ever been on a plane.
Every moment of the experience was made memorable for the special passengers. They were greeted by cabin crew, who were dressed up in elf outfits and reindeer antlers, as well as soap stars, Anthony Quinlan from Emmerdale and Ashley Taylor Dawson from Hollyoaks. They were also all given Christmas goody bags before buckling up their seatbelts and taking to the sky.
Once up in the air, Santa arrived to greet the youngsters. The children were given the chance to capture the magical moment by having their picture taken with Santa. And they were each given a Christmas present once the plane had landed. Here are some of them getting their gift from Santa…
Ian Hargreaves, Chairman of Leeds Children’s Charity, said: “Our children are all from LS postcodes and are aged between five and 11 and are in circumstances of disadvantage for many, many different reasons.
“Christmas is one of those times when that gap is more noticeable for everybody. Things like this help them feel more involved with Christmas.
“Many of the children may have never been on a plane, so for them to be on a plane and see Santa at the same time is amazing for them. It’s a wonderful gesture from Jet2.com too.”
To see the youngsters on their amazing skyward-bound adventure, check out this video courtesy of Leeds Live…