Santa isn’t the only one spreading Christmas cheer around Matlock and the rest of the Derbyshire Dales this year
Look out too for stone merchant Lee Webb and his three-year-old son, Eric, both dressed as elves.
For they have been spotted doing the festive rounds in their cute outfits, delivering Christmas trees to residents, as well as selection boxes and Advent calendars for the kids.
“The response we have had has been lovely,” said Lee, 38, who lives in Birchover.
“When we made a delivery to a family in Beeley, three little girls were so excited, they were squealing with delight. I don’t think they had ever seen elves before!”
Selling the trees is an idea Lee, 38, his wife Lisa and brother Jonathan came up with last year because business at his company, Birchover Reclamation, was slow during the winter.
They shifted 30 trees, but this year, they have reached that number already, while the selection boxes and calendars are going down a storm.
“To be honest, I’ll be surprised if we make too much money out of it, “ Lee admitted. “But just to see the look on the little faces when we turn up is worth it. I can do that all day long.”
Enlisting enthusiastic Eric has also been a key factor in the operation's success. He has loved being the bearer of glad tidings and goodwill.
Lee added: “Last year, he didn't really know what Christmas was. But this year, he knows what to expect and what happens with Santa.
“Every now and then, I ring him up, put on my deep voice and pretend to be Santa with my ho ho ho!”
For most of the year, Lee’s business specialises in the supply and delivery of reclaimed stone and stone-related products for a range of projects. It is based in an active quarrying area at Sandyhill Park in Middleton-by-Wirksworth.
His Christmas trees are all about quality too, though. They are real Nordman Non-Drop Firs, grown in the Scottish Highlands and renowned for their excellent needle-retention.
Orders are still being taken, and one of his most recent ones came from his mum, Sue Kelcey, who lives in Bakewell.
She said: “I think what Lee and Eric are doing is really good and full of the spirit of Christmas f them.”. I am so proud o