A popular children's entertainer has decided to retire after over a decade in-service all over Cumbria.

Simone Hetherington, better known as Cookie by the many children she has entertained in her career, has decided to retire the character for a variety of reasons.

For the uninitiated, Cookie is quite the character, as Simone explained: "Cookie is a bit crazy and silly - she's a lot silly.

"I wanted someone that children could relate to a bit more than just a normal adult.

"Cookie does things that you can't normally get away with as an adult, like cheating at games, dancing, and generally being silly.

"Children really like to teach her and tell her off when she's doing something wrong - like cheating at a game."

The decision comes after a long time spent performing the character, as Simone said: "I have been doing it for 13 years now, and I absolutely love it, don't get me wrong, but Covid put things into perspective.

"I have a large family, and I found that I was too busy entertaining other people's children than my own kids, as my kids couldn't go to the parties."

The Westmorland Gazette: Cookie is retiring after 13 years

Simone added that the time spent in lockdown with her family, and as a result of the rules not being able to go out to perform at parties, she had this realisation.

Simone would normally take Cookie to houses during Halloween and the festive period, but when her children found out she would be staying at home for Halloween 2020, she said they were overjoyed - which made it clearer that it was time to spend more time with the kids.

She said: "If Covid hadn't have happened I would still be doing it probably, but Covid allowed me to take a look back and see what I was missing out on."

Now, Simone has a job at The Wave Centre in Maryport, so is still working with children, something she said was a more regular source of income than children's parties.

It is not quite the end of Cookie though, as Simone is to put on a final show, which will be Cookie's final appearance.

The event will be on March 6 at 1:00pm this year.

Tickets are £6 each or 4 for £20, to buy, text 07946293572.