FREEMASONS lit up the faces of poorly children when they visited the Royal Berkshire Hospital as part of an annual tradition.

The Berkshire Masonic Charity raised £8,000 which was splashed out on gifts for youngsters in the Dolphin, Buscot and Lion wards.

Freemason Roy Stone, said: “In November, [Freemason] Mark Heppelthwaite, my wife Diane, my daughter Karen and I, visited Toys R Us in Reading, by arrangement, to carry out the shopping for Reading Family Aid.

“Whilst this was an exhausting experience, taking some four hours in total, the pain was removed by the pleasant thought of the great joy it would help bring to these children on Christmas morning.

“Regrettably, all gifts on the list were not available from one store and meant visits to other stores, plus some online shopping, to complete the requests, which I’m pleased to report proved successful.”

The group visited the Craven Road hospital on Tuesday, December 19.