Hundreds of runners donned festive outfits to take part in an annual run along the seafront for charity.

Father Christmas swapped his reindeer for running shoes as around 660 people took part in the annual Santa Dash along Hove promenade.

Runners faced sunny and brisk conditions as they lined up along the starting line for the five-kilometre race.

Organised by Commonwealth silver medalist runner John Gladwin, the dash raises thousands of pounds for the Rockinghorse Children’s Charity every year.

Among those to take part in this morning’s run for the first time were friends Jess Kelly and Amy Tomkins.

The pair said that after going for runs regularly in Carden Park, they decided to enter the race for a change of scene and a fun way to enjoy keeping active.

Amy said that the Santa outfit that every runner was given at the start was “quite warm”, perfect for the frosty morning across the city.

“We’re both hoping that the trousers stay up while we’re running,” she said.

The Argus: Jess Kelly, left, and Amy Tomkins took part in the race for the first timeJess Kelly, left, and Amy Tomkins took part in the race for the first time (Image: The Argus)

Jess said that the colder weather would not be an issue for them while running the course and that she was grateful for the sunny conditions for the race.

She said: “It’s cold, but the hardest bit was actually getting here and de-icing the car.”

Jess also said that, as she works with children, the race had a special meaning for her.

“I will be raising a little bit of money for such an amazing charity that does some brilliant work,” she said.

The event is the second to take place since the start of the pandemic.

Alex Marshall from the Rockinghorse Charity said: “It’s such a fun tradition and it’s been a really exciting day. For me, this is the start of Christmas in Brighton.

“It’s also so good to see children get involved as well - when you see the sea of red running down the seafront, it is incredibly heartwarming.”

Founded in 1967, the Rockinghorse Children’s Charity is the official fundraising arm of the Royal Alexandra Children’s Hospital in Brighton, raising money to provide life-saving medical equipment and additional services to improve the lives of sick children throughout Sussex.