BASILDON residents have been left confused and worried that the magic of Christmas would be spoilt for their children after seeing Santa riding down the road in his sleigh in Great Berry, Langdon Hills.

Basildon Round Table have been using a "summer Santa" and his sleigh on wheels to pick up food donations outside people's homes to deliver to three food banks in the area.

He comes complete with a summer straw hat and a groovy red patterned shirt and some cool shades.

Echo: Ho ho ho - Santa is making the rounds to help the less fortunateHo ho ho - Santa is making the rounds to help the less fortunate

Despite the nice thought, some families weren't as welcoming towards Mr Claus as you would expect.

One resident, said: "Why is Santa round our streets in June?!

"How can the round table destroy children’s concept and belief in Santa. It's very irresponsible.

"Kid's wait all year to see Santa and their faces when they see him is amazing now they can see him in June?"

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Resident, Jayne Wheeler, added: "I was shocked when I saw Santa coming down the road in his sleigh - I thought 'blimey, have we really been in lockdown that long that it's Christmas already?'.

"Luckily my kids were in the garden but I have no idea how I would've explained it to them had they have seen him."

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Basildon Round Table has been collecting food donations throughout lockdown but recently brought Santa along as a special guest as part of national round table movement to lift spirits throughout the pandemic.

Chairman of Basildon Round Table, George, said: "We are doing our utmost to make our Summer Santa as effective as possible and keep the magic alive.

"Santa has been quarantined in the UK whilst on his way back from his holiday in Southend. As good friends of Santa we asked if he would be willing to help us with our Foodbank collections and he was very happy to help, along with his summer clothes and suitcases.

"Lots of round tables all around the country have received help from Santa whilst he has been quarantined and he has been very well received all around the country - we didn’t want Basildon to miss out.

"Santa made such a huge success of the collection in Great Berry on Tuesday night with so many coming out to support him.

"We would hope the good people of Basildon will get behind us to support this fantastic cause."

Santa, said: “It was so nice to spread a little joy whilst collecting for such a great cause and I really look forward to seeing everyone again just before Christmas when I visits the streets of Basildon once again."