3 Dec

Merry Santas Sweep Merseyside

Santa Dash

Thousands of red and blue clad Santas swarmed the streets of Liverpool as the event celebrated its 10th birthday. As it stands, organisers are keeping the final count under wraps until next week's race in Las Vegas, with the two cities one again vying for the prestigious World Santa title.

Everton legend Joe Royle and Olympic champion Beth Tweddle officially started this year's race as runners made their way from Pier Head. The streets were transformed into a sea of red and blue as participants tackled the 5km route, which finished outside the Town Hall.

Beth, the Dancing on Ice 2013 winner, commented: "It's such an amazing way to get the family involved and the biggest thing for me is that it raises loads of money for so many nationwide charities. Until you have experienced it you won't believe it! It's just a huge sea of red and blue Santas and everyone is in really good spirits."

Representatives from the Las Vegas Santa Dash flew in by private plane to witness the race. Las Vegas and Liverpool have been involved in a (friendly) contest over the years, with the American event recording a larger turnout last year.

All Santas at yesterday's Dash received a commemorative medal, while all the funds raised will go to Claire House Children's Hospice, the supporting charity Walking with Giants and media charity, Liverpool Unites for Alder Hey Children's Charity.

Check out a video of the event on BayTV Liverpool.