HUNDREDS of red faced Santas dashed around Huddersfield yesterday to raise thousands of pounds for charity.
Huddersfield Lions organise the annual Santa Dash which last year raised £6,000 for good causes – and with three times more runners taking part this year organisers hope the tally will be higher too.
The 239 participants donned Santa suits, complete with fluffy white beards, while youngsters sported festive reindeer antlers and flashing noses to dash, run, walk, skip or hop the one-mile course.
The event kicked off at Yates’ Wine Bar on King Street, Huddersfield, with a route around the town centre which was suitable for wheelchair and pushchair users.
Laura Crane Youth Cancer Trust Ambassador Andy Raleigh – a Wakefield Wildcats player – started the race after a countdown, to cheers from the crowd.
Shoppers heading towards Kingsgate were greeted to puffing Santas and red nosed children.
Bob Armitage of Huddersfield Lions said: “Absolutely fantastic. A great event. We had nearly three times as many entrants as last year.
“We have used social media and people have really got behind it.
“Entrants are raising money for 24 charities and groups which is again incredible.”
Click on the link below for a gallery of Santas taking part in the event - are you or your friends pictured?
Among the runners were workers from B&Q on Leeds Road who donned the trademark orange aprons over their red suits.
Ruth Brook, 32, of Almondbury, said: “There are five of us from the store and this is the first time we have done the race.
“We are running for The Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice and hope to raise £500.”
And the British Heart Foundation had more than 15 family and friends running for the charity.
Daniel and Joanne Walter, of Golcar, lost their mum Elizabeth Tatlock, 61, in June and are raising money for the British Heart Foundation.
Daniel said: “It’s just a fun way of raising money for a charity which is close to us.
“Mum would have been so proud.”
The group have raised more than £1,800 already and hope further funds will keep coming.
The event attracted children in their droves including six-year-old Hayleigh Baldwin, who had her face painted as a reindeer and her eight-year-old brother Ben, of New Mill.
Mum Veronica Baldwin, 44, said: “We heard about the race from a friend and just thought it was a great idea.
“It’s a really great atmosphere.”