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Kicking off December with a guest column from our very own Martha Christmas

Hi Sunshine News readers,


Martha Christmas here, taking over Sunshine News with a very special announcement: Christmas is officially here! Well, for me it’s always Christmas – I’m sat by a log fire, with a Greggs mince pie (a particular favourite here at the North Pole) and a hot chocolate full of marshmallows; Michael Bublé is defrosting and singing a Christmas medley as I type.


Let’s hope I can share all the exciting news Team Sunshine have to share before I have an elf–related incident to deal with...


It’s the 1st of December and Team Sunshine are kicking off the festive season in style thanks to the fabulous North East Gospel Choir in Eldon Square at lunchtime today, come down and say hello or join in – because the best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear! We’ll be at Upper Grey’s Quarter (opposite Chatime) from 12pm – 1pm.

I’m delighted to share with you that those wonderful humans at Stagecoach are once again going to be bringing their free Accessible Santa’s Grotto bus to Newcastle and beyond. Our Santa Bus is a fully accessible grotto and this year we will even have a ‘Santa Bus Passport’ you can read before you come to plan your visit – this will be available on www.thesunshinefund.org/christmas.


We want everyone from 1 to 99 to feel welcome at the Santa Bus, and we know it can sometimes feel overwhelming so if anyone needs extra information or support please get in touch with one of our accessibility elves at Team Sunshine and they'd be happy to help. Santa, Whizzbang the Elf and I are so excited to come back to Newcastle and meet all you lovely folks.


Come along and find us - you can meet Santa, tell him your wishes and make sure your name is on the nice list - because as my favourite elf Buddy always says, “there’s room for everyone on the nice list!” (shh, don’t tell Whizzbang, I’m not supposed to have favourites!).

We’ll be out and about all week, bringing festive joy to the local area:


  • Tuesday 12th December – Tesco Kingston Park – including some very special guests from the Newcastle Falcons!

  • Thursday 14th – Sunday 17th December – We will begin our stay at the bottom of Northumberland Street in Newcastle city centre where we’ll be all day everyday. You’ll find us near TK Maxx and the Fenwick Christmas window.

Friday the 15th December heralds Christmas Jumper Day so dust off those festive outfits and spread some Christmas cheer – whether your style is understated yuletide chic or full-on tinsel twirling, fairy light twinkling fabulousness – there's still time to sign up to our Christmas Jumper Day and raise money for local children. Have a watch of their amazing video to find out what it’s about and how you’ll be helping.


During December, Team Sunshine are honoured to be sharing the stories of some of the families who have applied for equipment. There’s no better way to understand the impact your donations can make on the lives of local families than hearing their stories directly from them.

You may have seen our first piece which was in The Chronicle yesterday, which focused on 4-year-old Harry and his journey from receiving his autism diagnosis to starting at a new specialist school, and how we’ve supported the family through our family events, and now through funding equipment. Don’t worry if you missed it – all Christmas Appeal pieces can be found on our website by visiting www.thesunshinefund.org/appeal.


These will be published on our website, in print and online through Chronicle Live weekly so keep your eyes peeled for next week’s! Now, where have those Elves disappeared to?  See you on the Santa Bus!


Martha Christmas

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