A KIND-hearted taxi driver has donned a Father Christmas suit and decorated his car brightly to raise money for Poole Hospital.

Paul Owen, who works for Poole Radio Cabs, wants to make as much money as possible for Gully’s Place, which supports the palliative care unit for children and young people.

Filled with fairy lights, tinsel, baubles and even a real mini Christmas tree, festive tunes such as Mariah Carey’s All I Want For Christmas and Michael Buble play in the cab as customers are taken to their destination.

Mr Owen has already raised more than £460 for the good cause, with donations coming in from his colleagues including Adrian Power, whose wife, Sue, works on the children’s ward.

Paul said: “I often take children with disabilities and special needs in the car, and I thought this would be nice for them to see.

He added: “When I told my colleagues about this, they decided to sponsor me, and said that I had to wear the Father Christmas outfit until January 1, 2014.

“It brings a smile to people’s faces and customers don’t know that it could be Father Christmas picking them up for their journey.”

Helen Parker, senior sister of the children’s unit at Poole Hospital, said: “I think it’s absolutely amazing that Paul has taken the time and effort to decorate his taxi and raise money for the charity. It is raising awareness of what we do.”

Raffle tickets for a prize draw to raise more money for Gully’s Place are available from The Brewhouse, on Poole High Street.

For more information on Gully’s Place Trust, contact the Poole Hospital Charity fundraising team on 01202 448449, email fundraising@ poole.nhs.uk or by post to Fundraising Office, Poole Hospital, Longfleet Road, Poole, BH15 2JB.