There were smiles for miles this morning when huge crowds flocked to see the famous Glasgow Taxi Outing Fund begin its 72nd annual children’s trip to Troon.
More than 100 generous Glasgow taxi drivers have given up their day for free to take around 300 schoolchildren, who require additional support for learning, to Troon for a special day at the seaside, along with many parents, carers and teachers.
Drivers decorated their taxis and donned fancy dress, much to the delight of children and members of the public who congregated at the traditional starting point on Kelvin Way in Glasgow’s west-end. Well-wishers lined the street to soak up the atmosphere of the day and wave off the congregation as they embarked on their journey through Glasgow, many aided by colourful flags provided by Stewart Milne Homes.
The event continues to be supported by main backer, Glasgow Taxis Ltd, while The Butchershop Bar & Grill was again on hand to feed hungry onlookers complimentary rolls and sausage. Tom Boyd from the Celtic FC Foundation, a longstanding supporter of the outing, and Glasgow Lord Provost Eva Bolander joined the judging party for the coveted prize of best dressed taxi, with prizes provided by the Slug and Lettuce.
Kelvin Way was filled with a festival atmosphere thanks to the Police Scotland pipe band and the annual balloon release, this year sponsored by Watermans, which marked the start of the trip. Following their send-off, the fleet of taxis made their way through the streets of Glasgow to the city centre, through the south side and on to Ayrshire, to be welcomed by even more enthusiastic supporters.
Jim Buchanan, Glasgow Taxi Outing Fund chair, said: “Yet again, the Glasgow Taxi Outing Fund’s annual trip to Troon shows this brilliant city and its kind people at their wonderful best.
“We’re grateful to every single person who makes this happen, from our amazing drivers and volunteers, to the many businesses and organisations who get behind it. However, it’s all about the children and the smiles on their faces are truly priceless and that’s what makes the event so special.”
Speaking on behalf of the Glasgow Taxis Ltd executive committee, Chairman Stephen Flynn said: “We’re very proud of all our drivers who have given up their time to support the Glasgow Taxi Outing Fund’s trip to Troon and create such special memories for so many children.”
Scott Whyte, Managing Director of main sponsor Watermans Accident Claims and Care, said: “The annual Glasgow Taxi Outing has been a famous day in the city’s diary for decades and we are honoured to be able to offer our support to this year’s event. The real heroes of the day are the scores of taxi drivers who go above and beyond to make sure hundreds of local children have an unforgettable day out at the seaside.”
Sandra Brown, Sales Consultant for Stewart Milne Homes, said: “It’s been such a wonderful day for everyone involved and the atmosphere in Troon has been fantastic. The annual event is an important one on the calendar and it’s certainly a day that our residents and indeed all the locals look forward to celebrating with the children, families and taxis involved. It has been a pleasure to support such a worthwhile event and we’re already looking forward to the 73rd trip!”