A BURY couple are bringing festive cheer to neighbours and locals - by dressing as Santa and one of his elves to spread fun and joy in a Christmas charity bid.

Husband and wife team Pete and Lisa Machin don the costumes every night to welcome local children to a socially distanced meet with the big man himself.

After receiving several donations, the duo have upped their fundraising efforts and are attempting to raise cash for Hits Radio's cash for kids campaign, aiming to deliver presents to underprivileged children in the area.

Lisa said: "We have always decorated our house but we have never collected for charity like this. We heard about the charity and they help a lot of disadvantaged kids - especially with there being more due to the pandemic.

"We had a think about what we could do and Pete said that we should get a suit and then we thought of the Santa and Elf idea."

The pair do their rounds between 5pm and 7pm each day, including weekends.

Queues regularly form outside the couple's home in Bolton Road, with youngsters eager to catch a sight of Father Christmas.

Their fundraising exploits have seen them raise around £2,000 already.

Local MP James Daly has even stopped by the house with his sons, to view the impressive festive display that Lisa and Pete have put on.

He also posed with the decoration-covered house to launch his Christmas card competition.

The idea to properly fundraise started after people began giving them a pound or two, with the pair realising they could really help.

Lisa added: "I just thought that about £500 would do so I don't have a clue about how much we might end up with. There's not currently a target so we are just seeing how well we can do.

"The kids faces are amazing. They're not going to see Santa properly this year so this helps a bit."

You can help the cash for kids scheme by donating to their appeal. Donations can be made online, or you can donate a new and unwrapped gift at drop-off points across their catchment area.