A stampede of Santas descended on a London park for the return of a popular charity fun run.
Thousands braved the bitter cold and rain in Clapham Common today in aid of Great Ormond Street Hospital (Gosh).
Patients, families, hospital staff and even dogs suited and booted up to tackle the 5k and 10k courses, as organisers set a £250,000 fundraising target for the famous hospital.
Sounding the starting klaxon was 11-year-old Arun Corcoran, who has been a Gosh patient since he was six-weeks-old.
Arun, from Wokingham, Berkshire, who was born with only one kidney, said he was ‘very cold’ but looking forward to the race.
Also taking part was Indigo, 8, from south London, whose brain tumour was removed by doctors at Gosh three years ago.
Her condition meant she had to use a wheelchair, but she has since managed to learn to walk, ride a bike, run, dance, play piano and do gymnastics.
Her father, Robbie, said: ‘We never thought we’d see a day like today but it’s been step by step and now it’s fantastic, and Indy herself asked to join and we of course said we’d love to all get involved.’
He added: ‘We started with monkey bars in the playground and then it went from there. Last year it was a bicycle for the first time, and even this year a little bit of skiing. So it’s really quite amazing what Indy’s managed to achieve.’
‘I think Indy can achieve anything she wants to achieve,’ her mother Kirsty added.
Tim Johnson, chief executive of the Gosh children’s charity, said the money raised will go to a play service at the hospital.
He added: ‘At this time of year, of course, we always think about the children who will be in hospital over Christmas, and so the play team, although important all year round, are particularly important at this time of year, and that’s what we are raising money for today.’