THE MAYOR of Reading, Sarah Hacker, will be pulling the trigger on the starting pistol at the town's second Santa Run.

The runners in the 2015 RocSearch Santa Run will line up near Forbury Gardens dressed as the the big red man about to run the 5km course through the streets of the town.

Councillor Hacker will give a short speech before setting the 1,500 fundraisers off from the starting line.

Organiser from the Rotary Club of Reading, David Gibbins, said they were delighted that the Mayor had agreed to turn out early on a Winter morning in December. Her predecessor Councillor Tony Jones started the inaugural race last year.

She is also set to present the prizes to the first three women and three men who cross the finishing line in Forbury Garden.

This year the Santa Run kicks off with a 1.5km junior fun run for children under 10, starting at 8.30am on Sunday December 6.

The main run will start at 9am and the 5km course will take runners through Broad Street and along the canalside paths of the Oracle before being turned back towards the finishing line.

Each entrant will get a 2016 medal and a goody bag as well as the Santa suit and beard to be worn as they run.

Entrance costs £15 for adults and £7.50 for the under 10 race including adults accompanying children aged under eight years.

Last year the 1,000 entrants raised £24,000 with the primary beneficiaries being Alexander Devine Children's House Hospice Service and The Duchess of Kent Hospice, which is to be this year's main charities too, along with Daisy's Dream, which helps children affected be bereavement. Runners can apply for a place by visiting