Santa’s Lolly Run

Magic, absolute magic … It was a feeling that you belonged to something that was Christmas.

 Harry Tebbutt, Kwinana Rotarian.

Started back in 1954, the Lolly Run was the initiative of Alf Lydon and Kwinana’s Toc H Branch members.  Toc H is a Christian humanitarian organisation founded in 1922 by Reverend P. B. “Tubby” Clayton.  Originally formed to assist men and families traumatised by their experiences of World War I, this movement broadened its operations over time and now runs multiple programmes towards building friendships and offering charitable services throughout the community.

Until 2004, the Lolly Run was largely run exclusively through Toc H, who donated their own time and utes to deliver lollies to children across all suburbs of the Town of Kwinana.  However local membership and interest in ToC H dwindled and upon hearing that the Lolly Run was under threat, the Kwinana Rotary Club banded together with Council officials to take over.

Rotarian Harry Tebbutt remembers that in the first year Rotary was involved there was approximately 600 kilograms of lollies spread over 12-14 ‘sleighs’ and over the years the event has grown so popular that families from outside the local area visit specifically to take part in the celebrations.

Harry Tebbutt driving his ute in the Kwinana Festival parade, c2010.
Alf Lydon, first President Kwinana Road District 1961, President Shire of Kwinana, 1961-1966.

In the recording below, Harry Tebbutt shares his memories of the Lolly Run in years gone by, including unlikely local characters who put their hands up to create something special for the Kwinana community.   A longer interview with Mr. Tebbutt detailing his personal history and involvement in various community projects may also be borrowed from Kwinana Public Library.

Voices of Kwinana wishes everyone a safe and happy Christmas holiday and looks forward to bringing more history to life in the New Year!


One thought on “Santa’s Lolly Run

  1. It was wonderful to hear this story.
    I really got a kick out of the perceived OH&S issues relating to the run as described. We don`t live in a bubble as far as I`m aware.
    Long live the “run” … myself, wife and kids listen for the horn on Christmas Day, and it is ( sincerely ) one of the most wonderful experiences…we hear the horn the bell, and come out to say hi, and Merry Christmas.
    God Bless.

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