Whitby Krampus celebrates dark side of Santa Claus legend

A cloven-hoofed Christmas creature led the Whitby Krampus run as it wound its way through the seaside town this weekend.

PIC: Ceri Oakes
PIC: Ceri Oakes

Similar events are held in some parts of Europe, where folklore features both St Nicholas and his dark counterpart Krampus.

Although Krampus appears in many variations, he is usually hairy, brown or black, has a huge tongue, and has the cloven hooves and horns of a goat.

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Whitby’s event, is inspired by similar Krampus festivities in countries including Germany, Austria, Italy and Croatia.

The Whitby Krampus run is a spectacular costume parade that celebrates the music, myth and folklore of the dark side of the Santa Claus legend.

Krampus festivals or runs are popular throughout Europe and now in America but had never been held in the UK, until 2015 with the very first Whitby Krampus Run, which was very well received...even by naughty children.