Despite freezing conditions, more than 800 smiling Santas turned up at Old Trafford on Sunday 4 December to enjoy the Manchester United Foundation’s fifth annual Santa Run.
Started by Tom Cleverley and Eamonn Holmes, the 2km race was completed by an array of festive fun-runners who all raised money for the charity closest to their heart, including the club’s charity partners Francis House, The Christie and UNICEF.
Talbot House, a Newton Heath-based charity helping parents of children with learning difficulties, brought 42 Santas with them. Its development manager, Phil Ascott said: “It was typical Manchester weather - wind, rain and hail - but we all had fun. Some of our group had physical difficulties but they all made it around and they’re already talking about doing it again next year.”
United legend Clayton Blackmore, in training for next year’s London Marathon, took part and started the 5km race, which took the Santas past the Imperial War Museum and Media City. And if anyone spotted five Christmas presents racing after Santa and his Christmas tree… that would have been MUML employee Colin Scholes and his family, who always pull the stops out for their run around the Theatre of Dreams.
“My wife’s dad died two years ago so we always raise money for The Christie," he said. "The kids love dressing up and getting loads of attention and they loved the run, even though we nearly came last!”