Online ticket system introduced to meet Santa Claus in Montrose

Santa on a dodgem at one of the previous Montrose Christmas Spectacular events
Santa on a dodgem at one of the previous Montrose Christmas Spectacular events

The festive adverts are on the telly, so that must mean Christmas is on its way, and Montrose is gearing up for its annual Spectacular.

On December 10 and 11 the event on the High Street returns and this year an online booking system for meeting Santa and Mrs Claus in their grotto has been introduced.

This means youngsters will no longer have to wait in a queue and will be able to turn up at their pre-booked slot.

Santa and his helpers have been working on the grotto for the last few months to install new lights, with more than 400 bulbs illuminating it.

Santa Claus in Montrose, who organises the event, has this year attained charity status and it is hoped this will assist the group in applying for grants, as well as receiving donations.

Spokesperson for the group, Philippe Magalon, said: “Over the last few years, we have seen queues of families waiting to see Santa and Mrs Claus in the grotto. There has been instances of waiting times exceeding an hour.

“Obviously, we wanted to address that, so to alleviate the problem we now have an online booking system, where families can pre-book their visit and also select their time.

“There will be no need for anyone to have to wait in a queue now, and allow them to spend time visiting the other attractions.

“We are keen to let everyone know that walk up visits will only be possible if there are any time slots left by the day of the event.”

Philippe said slots are booking up quickly for both Saturday and Sunday.

This year’s Spectacular will have a full complement of around 30 stalls on both days following some disappointment last year when there were only stalls on the Sunday.

There will be also be funfair rides, music and hot food.

Each year Santa Claus in Montrose raises money for local causes through the Christmas Spectacular and other events.

In 2015, £1000 was donated to down syndrome support group Down Right Fun and Montrose Day Care Centre.

In 2014, £2,000 was presented to local youngster Aidan Thompson who has developmental verbal dyspraxia (DVD).

In 2013, £1500 was donated to Montrose Maternity Unit.

In 2012, £600 was raised for Dorward House care home.

2016 has also seen Santa get his own website: where a time slot to meet him can be pre-booked.