Taxis’ anniversary trip hailed a great day out

Dozens of special needs children enjoyed a ‘day full of fun and laughter’ when they travelled from their homes in South London in a spectacular convoy of Black Cabs to Hastings thanks to the Albany Charity Fund.

The event, held on Monday June 6, was the charity’s 25th Anniversary Children’s Trip to Hastings.

One of the organisers of the trip, Angela Roney says it was an amazing day. “The event was attended by The Mayor of Greenwich, Olu Babatola, 80 London Taxi Drivers and 240 children and their carers,” she said.

“They all left Charlton Athletic Football Club at 9.30am, with a Police Escort for the start of their trip to Hastings accompanied by the Unity Support Riders, members of St Johns Ambulance and Poice Cadets.

“First stop was at Bewl Water and then it was off to Hastings to be greeted by the Mayor of Hastings, Judy Rogers who welcome these very special visitors to Hastings.

“The children had free range of the funfair and other amusements on the seafront followed by a party at the Azur Marina, St Leonards, where they had fish and chips, entertainment and of course a disco and goody bags.

“It was day full of fun and laughter in Hastings all arranged locally by Hastings LCA Gina Sexton, Stella Willis, The Ladies Darts Team and local businesses.

Deputy Head of Willow Dene, Plumstead (one of the schools participating in the trip) Jude McPartlan said the children and staff had a great day out full of fun and laughter, adding: “The staff were overwhelmed by the generosity and care that was given by the Taxi Drivers and couldn’t praise them highly enough.”

The Albany Charity Fund was founded in 1972 when a group of Licensed Taxi-Drivers arranged to take some children with special needs to the seaside. Though the trip took a year to organise, the following summer 36 brightly decorated Taxis with 72 children aboard left Bermondsey in convoy to Margate. The aim was to bring some fun and joy into the lives of the children and it was such a success it became an annual event.