FATHER Christmas's seasonal tour of the Lyth and Winster Valleys has given a boost to mountain rescuers.

Santa hitched his sleigh to a red-and-white tractor to deliver around 180 gifts to children in the outlying villages of Underbarrow, Crook, Brigsteer, Crosthwaite, Witherslack, Winster and Levens in December.

Katie Metcalfe, one of the organisers, said some of the donations given would be kept to cover the cost of this year's event, and a sum of money is also destined for Kendal Mountain Search and Rescue Team.

Santa's Two Valley Tour has its own Facebook page and began in 2017, when around £200 was raised for local First Responders.

The idea came from Underbarrow villager Nicola Swindlehurst, inspired by the Kendal Lions float that tours Kendal each December.

Crook couple Katie and John Metcalfe helped build the sleigh. The project has also been assisted by Steph Baldwin, one of Santa's elves; and Crosthwaite CE Primary School's head teacher, Matthew Jessop, and his wife, Kimberley. Funding came from the Brigsteer and Bradleyfield Christmas committee.

"The amount of kids that came was absolutely wonderful," said Katie, whose father Tom Lynch loaned his International tractor to pull Santa and his helpers.

For December 2019's dates, keep an eye on the Facebook page later this year.