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Salvation Army Toy Run forced to move after Southwell Town Council decision





An annual motorcycle charity toy run will look a little different this year after a council said the usual starting point could no longer be used.

Every Christmas motorcyclists from across the district converge on Southwell Market Place dressed in Santa costumes with decorated bikes as they prepare to deliver toys to the Newark Salvation Army.

Last year 185 people took part in the charity ride, known as the Southwell Toy Run, with residents lining the streets to see the spectacular seasonal sight.

Southwell Santa toy run (59331704)
Southwell Santa toy run (59331704)

But now, Southwell Town Council have stated that they are no longer willing to host the event in the Market Place due to the cost of dismantling market stalls in order to accommodate the large gathering.

The motorcycle group were offered carparks around the town as alternative meeting points but due to issues with potholes, dangerous exits or general busyness, none were deemed suitable.

As such the the toy run will now begin a few miles away in Bleasby and be known as the Salvation Army Toy Run.

Southwell Toy Run (52120109)
Southwell Toy Run (52120109)
Southwell Santa toy run (59331708)
Southwell Santa toy run (59331708)

Organiser, John F Judson, said: "We have been offered a new start point, with a generous offer from Neil Mckechan, landlord of The Waggon and Horses.

"There is lots of space and is only three or four miles away. This is clearly a significant loss for Southwell and a gain for Bleasby.

"We do hope that our spectators will make the short journey to support us at the ride off or give us a wave from one of the villages."

Salvation Army Toy Run route 2023. (63105650)
Salvation Army Toy Run route 2023. (63105650)

The route for the ride will now follow the River Trent through Fiskerton, Rolleston and Staythorpe. Everything else will remain the same as previous years.

The toy run will take place on December 3, with participants urged to bring along new toys suitable for toddlers, children, or teenagers.



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