A CLACTON coffee house is hosting a free Santa's Grotto this month, aiming to support families in need this Christmas.

Jaco's Coffee House, in Rosemary Road, has hosted the free Santa's Grotto for three years, bringing smiles to the faces of the community.

On December 20 from 4pm until 7pm, 200 children will be arriving at the grotto during their allotted time slots to meet Father Christmas and receive a free gift.

There will also be free hot and cold drinks, mulled wine for adults, a seasonal buffet with hot and cold food and face painting. 

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Venue - The front of Jaco's Coffee ShopVenue - The front of Jaco's Coffee Shop (Image: Jaco's)

Scott Neilson, the owner of Jaco's, said the festive season can be difficult for families, especially those from low incomes.

Scott said: "When you have children, Christmas can be a very stressful time of the year. 

"The extra food shops, the Christmas presents, the stocking fillers and even Christmas jumper day, it really is never ending for parents. 

"I have four children and I know the worries and struggles of every parent, so if we can ever help take away a burden from a customer we will.

"The kids should never feel the struggles, they need to be kids and not grow up too fast."

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Glee - Children at Jaco's previous free Santa's GrottoGlee - Children at Jaco's previous free Santa's Grotto (Image: Jaco's)

Three years ago, Scott saw companies charging up to £15 for one child to meet Santa and was sad tot think many would miss out.

Scott adds: "How can people that are struggling pay £15 to see Santa ? Imagine having four kids. 

"That’s why we decided to do it for free. We don’t want kids to miss out. 

"Christmas is meant to be about the magic for children and giving. Not profiting."

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Hug - One of the children hugging SantaHug - One of the children hugging Santa (Image: Jaco's)

Customers are helping to set up the grotto, for which the café asked for donations of unused and unwanted gifts with a value of around £3 each. 

The generous coffee house has collected over 60 gifts and £300 to go towards buying gifts from the community.

Scott adds: "Whether it’s their time, money or gifts and it would not have been possible without the help of people in our local community."

For more information about the event and the café, visit Jaco's Facebook Page.