Children take off for their festive treat as Father Christmas special heads for skies

CHILDREN who are battling life-threatening illnesses took to the skies above Yorkshire in search of Father Christmas.

Monday, 3rd December 2012, 6:00 am

More than 200 passengers from the county’s hospitals and charities took off from Leeds Bradford airport on Saturday.

Youngsters from Martin House Hospice, Leeds Children’s Hospital, Cash for Kids, Cancer UK (Yorkshire and Humber),
One in a Million and PACT at Sheffield Children’s Hospital were welcomed by airport staff dressed fairies, elves and reindeer.

They then climbed aboard the Ryanair Boeing 737 to find Santa.

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Three-year-old Oliver McDermott, of Leeds, is being treated for a brain tumour. His father Tim said: “We have had a really tough 18 months.

“We wouldn’t normally get the chance to do something like this because of all the treatment so it has been great.”

Kirpa Suwali, 12, and sister Govind, 17, of Oakwood, Leeds, both suffer from osteopetrosis, a bone disease. Father Vajant said: “It is nice to start off the month with a bit of festive spirit.

“All the stress and worrying has been taken away. The whole family has been treated like royalty.”

Pilot Ian Barclay said: “Seeing the happy, smiling faces of every single passenger has been really special.”

Festive ingredients on way: Page 9; Grand Christmas: 
Back Page.