A trio of AA patrols teamed up with more than 50 London Taxi drivers last week when they took part in an annual charity run for London children.
The London Taxi Drivers’ Charity for Children, which was established in 1928, runs annual outings for children with special needs or social disadvantages. It also provides funding for appeals in assisting children in need of help. The committee is run by volunteers and all donations collected go straight to the good work that the charity performs.
This year, the destination of the run was Paradise Wildlife Park in Broxbourne, with a cumulative 864 miles once it had returned to the initial starting point on The Isle of Dogs. The run saw 54 taxis, 132 children, 61 carers, three AA patrols and two AA vehicles pass through the park gates, where the charity’s organisers had generously arranged free lunch and ice cream for all – enjoyed by the guests in the generally warm weather. The children and their carers had a fantastic time and got to see lots of the rare and often majestic animals, that are lovingly cared for by park staff.
London taxis, and black taxis generally, have enjoyed a long and productive relationship with the AA, which now offers custom-built breakdown cover for taxis and other light vehicles that are used commercially. Each year, the AA and its patrols also support other charity events, namely the Magical Taxi Tour which takes children from London to Disneyland Paris and is a major highlight in the diary of all involved, and the Annual Commemorative Military Run from Sevenoaks to Hastings.
Overall, the day passed without any major breakdowns, only seeing a couple of minor electrical faults and a punctured tyre, expertly attended to by AA Patrols of the Year, Nick Powell, Dan Tyrrell and former Patrol of the Year, Tony Rich.
Nick Powell, AA patrol of the year, said: “We love the work that London cabbies do and they really know how to look after their vehicles, and have given 132 kids a good time. It’s always a pleasure working with fellow professionals for such a good cause.”