Reindeer are normally a festive treat for families at Christmas - but the owner of one of England's biggest herds has revealed how bookings have collapsed amid the coronavirus pandemic.
George Richardson would normally be taking a large number of bookings from shopping centres and schools for his rent-a-reindeer business.
But he said the COVID-19 pandemic and restrictions had caused his bookings to crash in a year which he described as "horrendous".
He has 110 reindeer which he keeps in fields behind his garden centre in Cold Hesledon, County Durham, and would normally be receiving bookings for Santa visits and sleigh-pulling.
Mr Richardson said: "This is a year unlike any other. It's horrendous. Unfortunately, we fall outside the scope of any financial help.
"We have been stuck with losing revenue, not having any income but not getting any support either.
"This year is a write-off, luckily we have enough in reserve to get through, so the animals are in no peril.
"It's a case of crack on, breeding again next summer and being ready for next winter. Let's hope by next winter things have sorted themselves out a little bit."
He added: "Bookings are way, way down, perhaps about 95% down this year.
"The usual events that involve crowds of people are just not happening. How do you socially distance Santa?
"Our reindeer go all over the place, to schools, to Christmas light switch-ons, parades and shopping centres. We have some that go out on long-term hire.
"It's a six-week, or eight-week if we're lucky, business and those six or eight weeks keep us sustained for the rest of the year - nobody wants a reindeer in the middle of summer.
"The rest of the year they're chilling out, having babies, growing their antlers and at Christmas they earn their keep."
Mr Richardson reassured families his reindeer are still available for hire at COVID-safe events, and he has had some interest from schools for this year.
He made headlines in 2013 by driving 3,000 miles to the Arctic Circle and back to County Durham to bring in fresh blood-lines to his reindeer stock.