An online food and drink business owner has stepped in after families were let down by a ‘no-show’ Santa.
Posts were made on social media offering to visit families and bring small gifts in the run up to Christmas. Many members of isle Community for People facebook page say they arranged appointments and made donations of money and presents for the visits. There are now concerns over where those donations are and for the welfare of the man involved.
Now Christopher Gadd, who has a business premises in Margate, has dusted off the Father Christmas suit and arranged visits with friend Steve Jenkinson to those families who were let down.
The dad of two runs Food and Drink Shop / Hernebay, Whitstable, Canterbury, Thanet & Faversham and has previously donated goods to the community page to help people who are homeless.
The company has teamed up with Community for People admin Symone Connolly to carry out the Santa visits and has also provided presents.
The 33-year-old said: “I have helped out the group community of the people before by donating food and health and hygiene items to go towards needy people and the homeless.
“I run a company called food and drink and we are based on Facebook. I set up the business to help the local community purchase food and drink at up to 95% off the RRP. We also deliver to the door for just £1. This is to help everyone that needs it.
“When I saw that a Santa had promised visits and then not shown up, I decided to organise our own Santa and do free visits on Christmas Eve.
“We have a bookings for today but have room for more if anyone wants to book in for a slot. The visit include a free gift for the child or children.
“I just want to help the community any way I can.”
Dad-of-six and grandad-of-eight Steve will be the man in the red suit. Steve has previously been Santa for the Spring Lane Community Centre in Canterbury for the city’s carnival and for playgroups.
Mum-of-three Symone has also donated gifts, some that had been presents for her own children.