Visits to Santa’s Grotto in Falkirk to support Forth Valley Sensory Centre

Children in Falkirk are in for an early Christmas present on Thursday when Santa arrives back in town.

Saint Nick is taking up residence in his Grotto in the Howgate Shopping Centre to give little ones a chance to receive a gift and share what’s on their wishlist.

Visits to Santa at the Howgate will aid Forth Valley Sensory Centre manager Jacquie Winning (right) and her staff. Picture: Michael Gillen

Visits to Santa at the Howgate will aid Forth Valley Sensory Centre manager Jacquie Winning (right) and her staff. Picture: Michael Gillen

Shoppers can find Mr Claus in the mall next to Sutherland’s Fruit and Veg stall.

Visits to Santa’s Grotto, which is also open each weekend prior to Christmas, will benefit Forth Valley Sensory Centre as £1 from the £4 entry fee is being donated to help the charity in its work supporting those with sight and hearing loss.

The Howgate is hosting its special shopping evening on Thursday from 5.30-9pm.

The night includes carol singing by Falkirk Operatic Choir, a visit by Falkirk FC players to sign calendars from 6pm to 7pm, a Falkirk Foundation children’s football circuit, an Ochil Crafts market and free parking during this time.

Shoppers will also be able to buy a Howgate gift card worth £30 for £20 or a card valued £60 for £40.

Margaret Foy, Howgate marketing manager, said: “We’re looking forward to a busy, fun festive season and to welcoming Santa, as well as lots of shoppers.”

The centre is also accommodating those with sensory needs by turning off its music and tannoys every Sunday between 11am and noon.

Anyone with special requests can make their visits to the Howgate easier by emailing margaret@howgateshopping.co.uk. For more details, visit www.howgateshoppingcentre.co.uk.