A visit from the man in red was festive birthday gesture for one of Burnley's best loved sons

Birthday boy Gary Scully was thrilled to greet Father Christmas, aka Brian Crossley to his 50th party.
Birthday boy Gary Scully was thrilled to greet Father Christmas, aka Brian Crossley to his 50th party.
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A special visit from Father Christmas seemed the perfect gift for one of Burnley's best known sons.

The man in red, also known as Brian Crossley, made a surprise guest appearance at the 50th birthday celebrations of Gary Scully.

Affectionately known as Scully, the huge celebration attracted 900 guests who helped the construction company owner to celebrate his landmark day at Burnley Mechanics Theatre.

And when Brian landed it was like deja-vu from 29 years ago when he made the same guest appearance at Scully's 21st birthday party dressed as Santa.

Brian's daughter, Sanchia Crossley said: "My dad was unable to attend Scully's 21st as he was on duty as Father Christmas with the round table organisation but he made sure the sleigh did a de-tour so he could call in.

"The same thing happened at Scully's 50th when my dad found himself on duty again.

"Scully is a much loved person and the amount of people who went to celebrate with him speaks volumes."

The night was such a great success that Scully is now planning to make it an annual bash to raise money for charity.