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Council Ban Santa's Beard From Fundraising Taxi Driver

Thursday November 20 2014

A FUNDRAISING taxi driver who wanted to get his customers into the Christmas spirit by dressing up as Santa has been told to lose his beard by the council.

David Leonard, who decided to become Father Christmas to raise funds for Barnsley Hospice, was told that he wouldn't be allowed to drive his vehicle while wearing his beard because it "obscures" his face.

Coun Roy Miller said: "Barnsley Council fully supports Mr Leonard in his fundraising efforts, but he has been advised not to wear a false beard as this would obscure his face.

"Drivers are required to display their photographic licence at all times, which allows members of the public to identify that the person driving is the licensed driver shown on the photograph.

"Safety of the public is our paramount concern, but we wish Mr Leonard every success in his fundraising initiative."

Dave, of Greenfield Road, Hoyland, said: "They allowed me to dress as Santa last year. I collected money in a bucket and even trim up my bus with Christmas decorations and sponsors' names.

"It all seems a bit daft to me. The one thing I thought they would allow me to do was to wear Santa's beard."

Santa Dave hopes to raise £2,500 for the hospice.