Franchesca and Gabby enjoy the Southport Nutcracker Trail which was created by Southport BID

A Southport Mum said completing this year’s Southport Nutcracker Trail was “like doing a treasure hunt” after winning this year’s photo competition by Southport BID. 

The BID asked people to post their selfies of themselves with the figures on social media alongside the hashtag #southportnutcrackers with a prize awarded for one lucky winner. 

Charlotte Howard won the competition with her lovely pictures she posted of her daughter Franchesca, aged 7, a pupil at Norwood Primary School in Southport, and her friend Gabby, a pupil at Churchtown Primary School in Southport, in December, when Southport was under Tier 2 restrictions. 

Franchesca and Gabby were each awarded a £30 Southport Gift Card, which they can choose to spend in over 70 local businesses which have signed up to the scheme. 

Charlotte Howard said: “Having the Southport Nutcracker Trail was a beautiful attraction for the kids and a chance to have fun finding all of them scattered around our lovely town.

“It directed their attention to having fun and not what was currently going on in the world – even the two dogs joined in!

“It was cold and damp when we all set off – myself, my fiend Lou, our husbands, the kids and the dogs – a real family affair! The kids didn’t care about the cold. Franchesca was excited to see her friend Gabby and even more excited to try and find the Nutcrackers first.

“They set off running and skipping, shouting out each name as they found them. It was like a treasure hunt, and great exercise too.

“The girls never thought they’d win and the pictures we took were of them showed they were just enjoying it and having fun.

“They were so happy to win and were absolutely shocked!

“They are already looking forward to where they can spend their Southport Gift Cards when our shops reopen. Thank you so much Southport BID, you have brought smiles to two little girls.”

In the run-up to Christmas, 12 giant Nutcrackers were placed in positions throughout Southport town centre for shoppers to enjoy while supporting local businesses. 

The Southport BID’s Nutcracker Trail was also a great way of people enjoying socially distanced exercise. 

The BID ran a competition asking people to submit their selfies, a competition to name the 12 Nutcrackers and a contest for people to find all 12 of the figures before posting their entry in a special postbox in front of Wayfarers Arcade on Lord Street. 

Southport BID CEO Rachelr Ftizgerald said: “Congratulations to Charlotte, Franchesca and Gabby for winning our Nutcrackers photo competition! 

“They posted some beautiful pictures on Facebook which showed how much they enjoyed completing the Nutcracker Trail. 

“I would like to thank them and everyone who posted their pictures on social media throughout November and December. 

“The Southport Nutcracker images are a great advert for our town and will hopefully help to encourage more people to come and shop and dine in Southport when the lockdown restrictions end and it is safe to do so again. 

“I hope Franchesca and Gabby enjoy spending their Southport Gift Cards!”

The iconic 6ft tall Nutcracker figures, which resemble giant toy soldiers, were placed at strategic points throughout Southport town centre to recreate the popular Nutcracker Trail.

There were more to find in 2020 with 12 figures instead of the previous year’s 10.

The Nutcrackers brought real magic to Christmas shopping in Southport town centre,  with families enjoying finding all the figures in between trips to local shops and restaurants.

For more details and to buy the card please visit

For more details about the Southport BID, please visit their website at: or Like the Southport BID page on Facebook, Follow them @SouthportBID on Twitter and at southportbid on Instagram.


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