A ROW has erupted after a ‘Bad Santa’ is said to have traumatised a six-year-old girl in Radcliffe.

The parents of Layla Lewis say she was excited to sit on a Santa’s knee for the first time at Radcliffe Boys and Girls Club.

But mum Charli claims it was a “let down” as they first spotted Santa in the car park, with his beard down and smoking.

She added: “We followed him in and could see he was swaying. When the organiser told him to go to his grotto, he apparently didn’t know where it was.”

Charli claims Santa lay slouched on his chair with his belly on display and was rude to her daughter and other children.

Charli added: “Poor Layla clearly felt very nervous and on edge. She knew it wasn’t the real Father Christmas and I felt I had let her down as a mother. Children don’t get long to believe in Santa, which is why it’s so important for them to have a good experience. But this Santa didn’t act like Santa at all.”

But Laura De-Foe, who organised the event, described their Santa as a “great and gentle man” and added: “He would never knowingly make a child uncomfortable, and several other children left feeling very happy and told us we had done a good job and that they would come again.”

In her free-time, Layla works with Radcliffe Litter Pickers and fellow volunteers paid for a trip to Santa’s Grotto at Radcliffe Christmas Markets.

A litter pickers spokesman said: “A good Santa keeps the magic of Christmas alive which is so important for the early years of a child. They need to have a good first experience, so we want to help clear Layla’s bad memory.”