Published on 14 - August - 2012
Santa Claus is coming to town - in August!A general goods retailer in Eastbourne is hosting Santa's workshop this weekend, despite forecasters predicting up to 32C heat in the seaside town.
ESK's Santa in his summer wardrobe
ESK, which has departments ranging from DIY to garden, hardware and pets, will not be selling any Christmas products over the weekend, but will have "the actual" Santa on hand making children's toys and handing out sweets amid a grotto of animated Christmas characters.
"It's a bit of fun really," owner Bob Beevis tells DIY Week. "Last year we had a massively successful Christmas grotto weekend which was at the end of November."
"We've got such a great display for this year with animatronics - I guarantee it is the best Christmas display you've ever seen - we thought it would be nice to have a 'dry run' and show people what they can expect at Christmastime."
When asked why he is holding the workshop weekend in the middle of August, Mr Beevis replied: "Everyone is always so busy all the time! And Santa lives in Eastbourne, you know - it's his second home for the summer!"
As the retailer will not be selling any Christmas products on the back of the festive initiative, and Mr Beevis insists the stunt is not for financial gain so much as giving his customers a good time.
"Ever since I opened ESK 35 years ago we've always been about giving back to our customers and this is a part of that. I'm a grandfather and I can say that anyone with children or grandchildren will absolutely love it."
Santa will be visiting the Courtlands Road shop from 11am - 3pm on Saturday, August 18 and Sunday, August 19. Children will be able to see him sawing away and using his hammer and paintbrush to make various presents. They'll be able to chat with him and there will be forms available where they can fill in their wish lists for what presents they would like, and they can then post the form through the in-store letterbox.
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