Christmas cheer is back as Santa’s sleigh returns to Dunstable

Santa is coming back to Dunstable
Santa is coming back to Dunstable

Santa looks set to make a dazzling comeback in Dunstable with his magic float – two years after the event was cancelled.

Previously staged by Dunstable and the Round Table, the float graced the town and its surrounding area for 50 years before dwindling participation brought it to a halt in 2013

But now, thanks to determined efforts from past organisers, the Santa float is set to return after Dunstable Rotary Club agreed to take on management of the event.

Mark Tarsey, of Dunstable Rotary Club, said: “It came about because one of our members was involved in the float in the past and we are heavily community-based. We thought it would be a brilliant community event.

“There’s an awful lot of enthusiasm. There’s a big team of people working on it, with Dunstable Rotary Club and Orbit lending their support.

“And we’ve brought in some people who were trying to revive the float.”

Organising events of a large scale is no unusual challenge for the Rotary Club. Each year, they take 1,000 disabled children on a trip to visit Whipsnade Zoo.

But the event is still awaiting licences to be approved by Central Bedfordshire Council.

The float – which is currently half-built – is expected to make its first appearance at the lighting of the Houghton Regis Christmas Tree on December 5.

It will then appear at Ashton Square on December 12, with appearances across Dunstable until December 19.

Mr Tarsey added: “If we get good feedback, then we’re hoping to establish this as an annual event.

“One of the best things is we’ve received nothing but support from every agency that we’ve contacted.”