Friday, November 30, 2007

Santa not insured

Santa Claus has been banned from riding his sleigh through a market town because of health and safety fears. For three decades, Father Christmas has been pulled around Alnwick and surrounding Northumberland villages on a district council trailer.

But this year, Alnwick Council has been warned that its insurance does not cover the tradition. Voluntary group Alnwick Lions, which organises the event, called the decision "frustrating".

A council spokeswoman said: "Our insurance company has told us that our insurance would not be valid as the Alnwick Lions' use would not be classed as part of our core business. We always try to help with community projects, but regrettably, this is out of our hands."

Fortunately, local children will still be able to see Santa, as a local firm has lent the Lions a bus to replace the traditional sleigh.

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