What better way to start the Christmas Day festivities than with a dip in the North Sea in aid of St Elizabet Hospice.
Every year around 400 people start their holiday celebrations on Felixstowe beach and at 10am when the horn sounds they run into the freezing sea to raise money for the local hospice.
Joanne Rodger, St Elizabeth Hospice’s events and challenges fundraiser, said, “The Christmas Day Dip is in its 12th year and it’s still such a popular event. It’s a tradition now for families and friends to come down to the beach on Christmas morning and join together to take a dip or watch as their loved ones run into the cold sea.
“There’s always such a great atmosphere at the event, not only with the hundreds of people taking part, but with the thousands who turn out to watch. A lot of people do it in memory of their loved ones who were cared for by the hospice, and all the sponsorship money raised from the event goes towards improving life for local people living with a progressive illness.”
The event was launched this month with the help of Disney’s Frozen characters, Elsa and Olaf.
Miss Rodger added, “We get a lot of people dressing up to take part. We see all sorts, from people dressed as turkeys and Christmas trees, to others in their penguin onesies or even a mankini! This year we were joined by Olaf and Elsa to launch the event – and we attracted quite a bit of attention as Olaf lay on the sand, draped in tinsel. We expect to see quite a few Frozen characters on Christmas morning ready to run into the sea.”
Anyone from the age of 13 upwards can take part for just £5, or £10 with a T-shirt.
You can register in advance at www.stelizabethhospice.org.uk/events or on the day from 8.30am on Felixstowe beach, opposite Mannings Amusements.
St Elizabeth Hospice provides vital care and support to more than 2,000 patients and their families every year.