It was hats off to a fantastic Mad Hatter’s Tea Party for over 130 terminally ill children and their families at Gatwick Airport on Monday. The children, from the Chestnut Tree House Children’s Hospice, were experiencing all the fun of the airport, and special entertainment, as well wonderful party food in British Airways’ departure zone.

BA pilots and uniformed colleagues were there to lend a helping hand for the special event, which was held to celebrate the ten-year anniversary of the Sussex-based hospice. The hospice cares for life-limited children and young adults aged up to 19-years-old.

Peter Simpson, director of Gatwick, said: “It’s been a real privilege for British Airways to lend a helping hand to be part of this marvellous celebration, and help give the children and their families a fantastic day out here at Gatwick.

“The hospice does an incredible job and we wouldn’t miss this opportunity to do what we can to help support this fantastic hospice and all the work put in by carers each and every day.”

BA has been working with the Chestnut Tree House for over a year now and staff at Gatwick have raised over £2,000 for the hospice by participating in fund-raising events such as a special Midnight Walk and ‘Bag it and Give’ scheme.

Children at the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party were entertained by musicians, face painters, balloon artists and much-loved characters from Alice in Wonderland, including the Mad Hatter, White Rabbit and Alice herself.

All the food at the party was supplied by Gatwick catering suppliers, Alpha, while Crawley-based Cakey Cakey Cakey, donated a special cake.