Thousands of runners dressed like Santa brave the cold to take part in Christmas fun run

Thousands of runners dressed in Santa outfits took part in the run (Picture: AFP)

Runners dressed in white beards and Santa hats pounded the pavement to raise money for charity in a Christmas fun run.

Thousands of people dressed in red and white took to the street in Liverpool to take part in the event on Sunday.

It was a sea of Santas as the biggest and longest-established Santa Run in the UK and in just the second year- 2005-  it received Guinness World Record status for the Biggest Santa Gathering.

Amongst the runners were two Ukrainians who fled the war torn country who said they were ‘overwhelmed’ after they took part in the Santa Dash.

Twins Anna and Amina Lipska came to the UK in May to escape the ongoing war in Ukraine with their mother and grandmother.

Since September they have been living with widower Rob Perry.

The fun run broke the Guiness World Record in 2005 (Picture: AFP)
Everton football fans decided to wear blue outfits instead of red (Picture: Getty)
Around 5,000 runners took part (Picture: Andy Von Pip/Shutterstock)
Runners dressed in Father Christmas attire took part in the annual 5k Santa dash (Picture: AFP)
Katumba Drummers at the annual ‘Santa Dash’ (Picture: Andy Von Pip/Shutterstock)

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Rob who has taken part in the Santa Dash for several years suggested that they join in the Christmas festivities to give them an opportunity to ‘make wonderful happy memories’.

Speaking to the Liverpool Echo Rob said: ‘Their life has been turned upside down and I just wanted to give them something to remember.

‘They had never seen or heard of anything like it and their mum and grandmother watched on and were able to send photographs back to their family in Keiv.

‘I think they were a bit overwhelmed to see the city coming together on such a big occasion.

‘The twins never left my side and we would walk for a bit and then run for a bit. It was a brilliant day.’

Rob, 69, who lost his wife two years ago said that he was getting ‘set in his ways’ living on his own in Birkenhead and that the arrival of the family has brought ‘life back into his home’.

He said: ‘My wife and I always said that whatever we have we should always share with other people. It is a large house and I was just rattling around on my own.

Rob said the Santa Dash culminated with Anna and Amina spotting two men running with Ukrainian flags. The twins ran over to thank them for their support.

Rob a former civil servant said: ‘They were made up and it was quite emotional. They were so happy and ran up to them and told them they were from Ukraine. You can’t change the world but I can help these people and they can stay with me for as long as they like.’

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