Romiley and Marple Lions Club

Christmas Activities 2021 are a HUGE success!

Pictured above top: The Santa Dashers warm up ready for the Lions 2021 Santa Dash. Below: Lions members and DMR staff are pictured as Lion President Phil Daniels receives a cheque for £3000 from DMR Railway owner Brian Lomas for 'helping Santa' with the 2021 grotto.

Yes, the Marple Santa Dash did return and we were delighted that 179 people registered for the event, swelling the Club's Charity Account by £1,800. Many thanks to Victoria Thomson and Penny McKnight, of Kidneys for Life (which benefitted by £1,770 in sponsorship money), for all their hard work dealing with the online registrations. The pre-Dash warm-up session was energetically supervised by Sarah Lee Fitness of Marple in the Memorial Park and members of Bredbury, Romiley and Marple Air Training Corps(1196 Squadron) carried out marshalling duties. Marple Band welcomed the Dashers at Dobbies (Marple) Garden Centre, where they were served with mince pies, kindly supplied by Morrisons' Bredbury store. As usual, the Dragon Miniature Railway was swamped by a multitude of Santas, who were then able to be transported back to the Park by Smiths of Marple. As ever, I thank all those loyal, hardworking individuals and organisations who helped Romiley and Marple Lions to ensure that the 2021 "Come Back" Santa Dash was a success. There were many challenges and there was always a degree of uncertainty as to whether or not the event would take place but it did and I must finally pay tribute to all the wonderful people who registered to come along and support us wearing the Red Suit. Thank you everybody. It was another great day.

Once again, the Lions ensured that Father Christmas was available in the Dragon Miniature Railway's Christmas Grotto to bring much needed festive cheer into the lives of the many families who came along to see him. An incredible £3,000 was raised for the Club's Charity Account, with more than 2,500 children visiting the man in the Red Suit. Many, many thanks to the DMR, their volunteers and supporters for their continued loyalty at this time of year - it is invaluable to us and very much appreciated.

Christmas video messages, including a flying Santa video, were recorded and the Club also liaised with Young Lives vs Cancer to provide Father Christmas "Zoom" sessions for young cancer sufferers. One of our Santas helped Reuben's Retreat at Lymefield Garden Centre at Broadbottom with a fundraising day and it was very successful!

A new venture for the Club was the production of its 2022 Calendar, sales of which raised over £2,000. It features photographs of local scenes and proved so popular that the 2023 Calendar is already being prepared.

In addition to support given to various worthy causes throughout 2021 (list attached), the Club responded to several local Christmas appeals and made donations to the Wellspring Kitchen, Life Centre Romiley and the Cherry Tree Project.

All in all, despite the trials and tribulations that we have all been experiencing, the Lions had a very successful and rewarding 2021 and were even to be seen on local markets, promoting the Club, its new calendar and the Lions Clubs International Message in a Bottle scheme. In 2022, we hope to become (Covid permitting, of course), more active on the local scene - perhaps returning with some of our silly games (who could forget "Ball in the Bog?). Whatever the year has in store for us, the one thing that we must do is recruit new members, especially from the Marple area (Club details attached), and we hope to see again many of the people who so kindly supported our 2021 Christmas activities. Who knows, perhaps they may decide to join us!

Lion Terry Harding - Welfare Chairman

Romiley and Marple Lions Club

Serving the local community since 1978 - Registered charity Number: 1181500