Children at Royal Blackburn Hospital were given a special treat and a timely boost when Rovers’ first team stars played Santa for the day!
Manager Tony Mowbray and the Rovers squad made their annual visit to the Children’s Ward at the hospital, armed with sacks full of presents and Christmas cheer.
The players posed for photos, signed autographs and chatted to children, parents and hospital staff, before handing out a selection of Rovers goodies, including cuddly toys, calendars, hats and scarfs, as well as board games for the Ward.
Fans favourites Bradley Dack, Charlie Mulgrew and Joe Rothwell (pictured) were amongst those in attendance at the hospital and proved particularly popular as they spent time with each of the young patients and their parents.
Tony Mowbray said: “I think it’s very humbling for the footballers, first and foremost.
“At Christmas time, when everybody should be happy and having fun, to see some children laid in a hospital bed it’s quite frightening, so anything that we can do to bring a smile to a child’s face, by giving them a present, hopefully it helps a little bit.
“The community is important in any football club and it’s important that our team get out into the community and meet the people, and whilst it’s not ideal meeting children in hospital at this time of year, if we can put a smile on a face then that’s good.”
Corry Evans, who signed a new contract with the club earlier in the day, added: “I’ve got three young children myself and it’s not nice to see kids in hospital over the Christmas period, you want them to be at home enjoying time with their families.
“We’ve come in and raised their spirits, handing out presents, and it’s nice to see the smiles on their faces when we come round and say hello to them.”