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Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Winter Blunderland

I came across this snippet of news today and it was too good to miss!

Father Christmas was allegedly punched by a father who spent hours queuing and three elves are said to have been involved in the violent confrontations.

Lapland New Forest, located on the Dorset Hampshire border - which costs £25 a ticket - promises a magical festive experience - including a winter wonderland full of reindeers and log cabins, a skating rink and a magical tunnel of light.

However disappointed families have spoken of a "glorified car boot sale" with a Nativity scene on a billboard, a broken iceskating rink and huskies in a muddy field.

The park has now been renamed "Winter blunderland" and has received 1,300 complaints.

Adrian Wood, 49, a worker who resigned from the park said: "Santa was punched by a furious father who had been waiting in line for four hours.

"He had got to the front only to be told he couldn't take a picture of his children and that they weren't allowed to sit on Santa's lap.

"The family were then told they would had to get in another queue to get their presents - that was the final straw.

"He marched up to Santa and punched him in the neck and on the chin and the staff and his family had to pull him off - it was unbelievable."

It was claimed one child had to be comforted after finding a Santa smoking a cigarette outside his grotto.

Ivan Hancock, from Dorset County Council's trading standards department, said: "I've never known anything spark so many complaints in my 20 years of working with three different authorities. We have had 1,300 people contact us.

"I've heard of someone spending 3,000 pounds on tickets and terrible stories of real human misery," he said.

Henry Mears, from Lapland New Forest Limited, confirmed that his staff had been attacked.

"So far about six of our staff - three elves and three security - have been assaulted and all have been verbally abused," he said.

"One of our elves was slapped and had a pram pushed into her leg which has left a horrible bruise."

But Mr Mears insisted they were isolated incidents and most people were happy with their experience.

"I would like to point out that 95 per cent of the people who come to Lapland New Forest are extremely happy with it," he said.