Anyone going to a Christmas fancy dress party soon may notice a distinct lack of jolly fat men in red suits.

This year at Escapade, it has been noted with some surprise that sales of Father Christmas fancy dress are down to their lowest levels in the last ten years, with shoppers instead selecting other attire in which to dress up.

Our own Bhupendra Maisuria commented: "I think the general consensus is that Santa is an obvious choice for dressing up for Christmas parties and customers are looking to be original with their costumes."

It was also put forward that Brits may be influenced by the media, which doesn't seem to be big on featuring Father Christmas in ad campaigns this year.

Consequently, you might see quite a few Christmas trees and even Jesuses at 2010 festive parties!

Earlier this month, the Worcester News reported that Destination Worcestershire is on the lookout for Santa look-alikes, but said the eventual winner would wear a traditional green outfit rather than the Coca-Cola-inspired red one.