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Author: News Letter
Published on 22 December 2011 08:30 AM

In excess of £80,000 has been raised so far in the annual Black Santa sit-out at St Anne’s Cathedral, it has been confirmed.

Dean of Belfast, the Very Rev John Mann, said he remained confident that the overall target of £201,100 will be reached by the time the barrel is closed at teatime on Christmas Eve.

The monetary figure symbolically represents £100 for every year since Jesus Christ was born.

Dean Mann — who has put on the famous black cape for the first time since being installed in his clerical role earlier this year — revealed an impressive £19,000 was lifted alone on Monday.

The London-born minister believes the milder weather is aiding donations and described the collection as “steady”. Expressing his admiration for the kindness of the public, he said:

“Some children have brought their pocket money and there have been some quite large donations as well of £1,000 and more that people have given.

“Some donors just thrust a wad of notes into your hand or into the barrel and it turns out to be a lot of money.”

Dean Mann added: “There are people arriving all the time.

“It is great to be part of it and see people’s reaction and generosity of giving and spirit.”

For more information: Call Age NI Advice: 0808 808 7575