At the Broad Street Mall in Reading, England, British Army soldier Steve Chessell, playing Santa Claus, dangled from the mall ceiling on Saturday for about 30 minutes (video below) after getting his beard caught in a rope.
Chessell was hired to play the part of Santa and rappel down through a mall skylight during the annual Christmas show, reports the Reading Chronicle.
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Broad Street Mall marketing manager Stephanie Maynard told the BBC: “He could have just taken his beard off and let himself down but he was such a professional and he didn’t want to let the children down. He lost his footing as he came through the hole in the ceiling and there was a sudden jolt and he got caught in the clip on the rope.”
“Some people were absolutely mortified while others thought it was the funniest thing ever. Usually after the lights switch-on the center empties, but there were so many people still there waiting to see if Father Christmas was going to get down,”
Chessell was eventually rescued by fellow soldier Marc Hilton.
If this story sounds a bit familiar, another man playing Santa got stuck while descending in a mall in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, last year.