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Where I live, not far from Reading we have an annual Toy Run. What is this? I hear you ask.
Put simply it is a bunch of motorcyclists who deliver parcels (all donated) to children who may not get anything at Christmas within the local area.
The very first Toy Run took place in 1985, by the then Reading Branch of the Christian Motorcycle Association. Mainly consisting of club members (around 18) and a few friends. Meeting up at The Pheasant Pub in Winnersh and taking gifts to the children at Battle Hospital. (Source: Reading Toy Run Event History)
The next run didn’t take place until 1987, however, from this point on, the bikers met at different places around the area, and ultimately at Shire Hall/Foster Wheeler. As they were forever having to find larger areas to accomodate the amount of bikers attending.
The Toy Run in Reading, certainly in 2014, held the Guinness World Record for the number of bikers taking part in a charity event.
It has become one of the spectacles of my home town where, it is a well attended visual experience.
The Bikers ride from Foster Wheeler in Reading to High Close School in Wokingham. This is run by the charity Barnado’s. From here the gifts are then distributed.
Nearly all the Bikes and the Bikers, now numbering over 2000, are in fancy dress, and the bikes are decorated too. It’s a lot of fun.
Sadly, last year the Run had to be cancelled due to the weather (heavy snow, which is unheard of here!). Quite rightly this was for the safety of the bikers as without them the Toy Run wouldn’t happen at all. Didn’t mean the donated gifts didn’t get distributed, they were ferried from Foster Wheeler to High Close in a few van loads and then distributed to the children.
Checkout this Wednesday’s, Wednesday Vlog: Reading’s 33rd Annual Toy Run 2018 if you want to know more.
You will be able to see some of the fun (assuming I get it edited in time!)