The Royal Navy have been getting into the Christmas spirit, with a team of volunteers from HMS Sultan offering to lend Father Christmas a helping hand.
Divisional staff from the Defence College of Technical Training are sure to be on the nice list after they stepped in to help refurbish a derelict sleigh purchased by local community group the Gosportairians.
The group are looking to raise funds for their “Santa’s Christmas Sleigh” appeal, in aid of the homeless and the local food bank.
The team stripped the sleigh to its original frame and used their craft skills learned within the Navy to restore it to its former glory.
Members of the Royal Navy Air Engineering and Survival school also provided a graphic cockpit display so that Father Christmas could navigate his journey with ease.
Captain Peter Towell, the Commanding Officer of HMS Sultan had the honour of passing over the reins to the man himself.
Petty Officer Adam Hilton said of the project:
“It’s been a fantastic project to work on, from taking the Sleigh from what was on the trailer when it arrived to what it is now has been incredible.”
“There has been a lot of help from people here and it’s great to be able to provide children with a sleigh that’s worthy of Santa, I think it’s going to bring joy to the local community.”
Whilst Malcolm Dent, Chair of The Gosportarians said:
“We had initially started on plans to restore the sleigh ourselves within Fort Brockhurst, then the guys at Sultan heard about the project and offered to help renovate it for us and have been brilliant from start to finish.
“We’ve also had donations of the sparkling reindeer from my local hair dresser and another volunteer making the cushions in the Sleigh and it looks amazing.”
The sleigh will be journeying around Gosport, complete with Father Christmas, saying hello to local children and raising money for the Gosportairians Christmas appeal.