It’s one of the staples of the Christmas season for professional clubs across the land and it was no different for Oswestry’s The New Saints.
Players and staff from Park Hall headed to the nearby Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital on Monday in an event organised by TNS Foundation.
The players took the annual trip to the Alice Ward, which is the children’s orthopaedic surgery and rehabilitation ward and the club’s media officer, Stewart Bloor, was delighted to be there.
“It is never nice to be in hospital and especially so at this time of the year,” he said. “Therefore it was very heart-warming to see the genuine cheer that the presence of our players brought into the lives of the children.
“One young girl – and we won’t use her name – said to us that she had never had an autograph from a famous person before. Moments later that was remedied as Blaine Hudson and Wes Fletcher signed a matchday programme for her.
“There were several such incidents and all of them very special, as lasting impressions were made. In fact all the players were brilliant today. Goody bags were given out containing a number of items, including special invitations to a TNS game.
“Many thanks indeed to the staff at the Orthapaedic Hospital, you were all very welcoming and you do a truly wonderful job. And to the amazing children that we met today, have a fantastic Christmas and we would love to see you at The New Saints very soon.”
Suzanne Marsden, manager at the Alice Ward, was delighted to see the players, as were the youngsters too.
She added: “It was great to welcome the players and staff from TNS to the ward.
“The players were absolutely wonderful with the children, and it was lovely to see them interacting with them. Some of the players were playing on the games console with the children, while some even got involved with the children making crafts which was really nice to see. The children had a brilliant time.
“A big thank you to TNS for coming in and putting a smile on our young patients’ faces.”