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Former patient spreads a little festive cheer

A former patient recently spread a little festive cheer when he dropped into the Royal Manchester Children's Hospital with Father Christmas - and a photo booth to ensure the precious memory is preserved. Luke Stevens, 31, from Urmston, runs a company called Eventbooths with his brother Alix, 35, from Sale. They provide photos booths for parties. However, because Luke was treated in Pendlebury he offered his time for free.

Patients who are unable to leave the hospital to see Father Christmas were treated to their own personal visit and had their photo taken to provide proof that he knows where every child is on Christmas Day. They also dressed up in the various props that Eventbooths brought with them and were given a photo.

Luke said: "As a child I had a bad accident which saw me spend sometime in Pendlebury Children's Hospital. The staff were great and helped me through the whole ordeal. Christmas is a hard time for children that are being treated in hospital and so I wanted to do something that would try and help keep there spirits up. The booth brings fun and laughter to anyone who goes inside and so I thought it would be great to get the kids in there with Santa with lots of wigs and costumes to spread the festive joy. Seeing the smiles on the children's faces was great."

Therapeutic and Specialised Play Service Manager at RMCH, Susan Fairclough said: "It is very generous of Luke to give up his time to make the festive season that little bit more special for our young patients. However, the staff also got in on the act too so it was a great day for everyone!"