VOLUNTEERS of a charity for the sick spread some festive goodwill by spending their Christmas morning giving presents to patients in hospital.

Members of the Harwich Fellowship for the Sick visited the Fryatt Hospital in the town.

They gave presents to people who found themselves in a hospital bed this year rather than in the comfort of their own homes.

The volunteers make the trip to the hospital every Christmas Day in a bid to lighten the day for patients.

Betty Holbrook, from the fellowship, said: “It is always lovely and they are always pleased to see us.

“There were some local people and some from Oakley and from Colchester, there are a lot of elderly people and they get looked after really well.

“We get dressed up for the occasion and they are amazed as they don’t expect it.”

Sheena Parsons, honorary secretary at the charity, said: “Di Greening, deputy site manager, and Lyn Day on reception get the presents in and wrap them and we pay.

“It’s a big job and we are very grateful for them doing it.”

The charity launched in 1957, in the early days of the National Health Service, when residents in Harwich decided they needed more care than they were receiving.

The fellowship funds the Hospital Hopper bus from the town to Colchester, and the local Tendring Specialist Stroke Services group, as well as numerous health-related needs of the town.