In perhaps the most 21st century thing to happen yet, Christmas spirit and online influencer culture have combined as Santa Claus has been spotted hanging around trendy spots in London.
We might be used to seeing people dressed up in Santa suits handing out presents in shopping malls, but this Santa has a mind of his own, darting around London and taking photos everywhere he goes, posting them to his Instagram account.
Not many famous areas of London have been left uncovered by Santa, who has ventured around places including Richmond Park, the Natural History Museum and the nightclub Annabel’s, amongst other haunts.
The Instagram account already has over 3,000 followers, and it’s run by native Londoner Neil Andrews, who has been running the account for a couple of years now. It started as a bit of fun, as he decided to buy a Santa Claus suit and get his friends to take photos of him wearing it around the city.
Unsurprisingly, he gets a lot of attention when he’s out in London, with his friend and partner who help him out in taking the photos. He takes plenty of selfies with locals and tourists, staying in character when approached.
He’s been around all year – not just in the festival season. At the beginning of the year he was seen at St Pancras station, was at the beach over the summer, and in a flower field. For children, he might as well be the real Santa Claus – he ensures that children don’t see him when he’s out of costume.
Weirdly, a different man in a Santa suit was pictured scaling scaffolding outside the Flatiron Building in New York City two days before Christmas day, waving and shouting ‘ho ho ho’ to passersby. It was claimed that it was a superintendent at the building, but the superintendent in question denied any involvement, saying that him climbing the scaffolding would have been a security breach.