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Santa comes early at festive pub
Christmas comes but twice a year for the customers of an eccentric boozer.
The Bedford Tavern, in Western Street, Brighton, celebrates the yuletide season with a tree, carols and festive decorations.
And if the regulars have been good boys and girls, Father Christmas himself even makes an appearance.
This may not sound unusual – but the pub held this year’s Christmas last Sunday, despite it being summer.
Pub manager Adam Brooks, 40, said: “I've lost count of how many times I've been wished a Merry Christmas this weekend.
“We've seen customers dressed as elves, warm Christmas jumpers and one or two Santas. It's been bonkers.”
From Friday to Sunday revellers pulled crackers and wished each other a Merry Christmas as a snow machine tipped foam snowflakes over the pavement outside.
On Sunday, roast turkey with all the trimmings was served, with £3 from each meal sold going towards HIV charity The Sussex Beacon. Carrie Taylor, 35, a learning development specialist, of Sussex Square, Brighton, said: “I quite enjoy pigs in blankets and Christmas pud in June. December is so over-rated.”
Claire Balchin, 35, a carpenter, of Brunswick Road, Hove, said: “It is bizarre wearing flip flops and eating Christmas dinner, but there’s a genuine festive feel.”
The unseasonal festivities began in 2010 as an antidote to the World Cup and proved so popular it became something of a tradition.
Mr Brooks said: “We try and do things differently at the Bedford - we are not just another pub. We try and support the local community with events such as the Easter Bonnet parade and Christmas in June.
“Young, old, gay or straight, we try and appeal to everyone who is up for a good time.”
On Saturday for the first time there will be New Year’s Eve celebration at the pub, with a midnight countdown.
The fun will continue on Sunday, with Piano Bingo - using popular sing-alongs rather than numbers.
Mr Brooks said: “Over the next ten months we are trying to raise £5,000 for The Sussex Beacon with the main event being me attempting the Brighton Marathon. I say attempting as the only running I have ever done involved a bath.”
For details on any of the events or to help with their fundraising effort, call the Bedford Tavern on 01273 739495.