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Santa comes to Alton Towers early

In the News
Saturday, 1st October 2005 By Rob Gissing

Santa is due to hit Alton Towers early, as the newly formed 'British Santa Association' organises their AGM.

Father Christmas is coming to the magical world of Alton Towers for the inaugural convention of the newly formed British Santa Association. The real Santa, and 14 of his fully trained lookalikes, will leave their sleighs behind and travel to the Staffordshire Moorlands theme park by mini-bus.

The get-together has been organised by the Ministry of Fun, Britain's largest and official Santa supplier which was founded almost a decade ago. They will use the convention to lay down their first code of conduct which will then be implemented by all Santa helpers, including those at Alton Towers in the run-up to Christmas.

Santa's agenda will include:

  • The history and future of Santa Claus
  • Costume and make-up
  • Language
  • Names of the reindeer
  • Perfecting the greeting ho, ho, ho
  • Toys and music
  • Character and behaviour
James Lovell, of the London-based Ministry of Fun, said: "Santas need to have a big booming voice and a large tummy because of all the mince pies they eat.

"Their voice is very important. It has to be rich and deep. The beard has to be the right length at mid-chest height.

"We will be travelling by mini-bus because we want to make sure the sleigh doesn't break down before Christmas."

The real Santa, who will be at Alton Towers for the convention on Wednesday, said: "I am very grateful to the Ministry of Fun for helping train my look-alikes.

"I can't be everywhere at one time in grottos and shopping centres before Christmas so it's nice to have a bit of help.

"However, it will be the real me come Christmas Eve when I am travelling round the world on my sleigh to visit all the children."

During the visit to Alton Towers, Santa will be challenged to ride Air, proving he can cope with a few G-forces as well as his sleigh.

A spokesman for Alton Towers said: "It's great news that they have chosen to come here for their convention. We think it's a fantastic idea to have a code of conduct."

Source: The Sentinel

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