SANTA Clause swapped his sleigh for skis as he made his way into Trafford's Chill Factore.

The man himself entered in style skiing down the 180m real snow slope, accompanied by his festive helpers to take up residence in the Chill Factore Grotto.

It is the only grotto in the country on real snow, and this year is inspired by the fairy-tale, Hansel and Gretel. The grotto will take form of a gingerbread house, surrounded by sparkling trees, glistening lights and chattering elves.

All of Santa's guests will receive a gift and play time in the Snow Park or Mini Moose Land, and older children will be able to have a go on the Downhill Donuts, the Luge Slip 'n' Slide, Sledge O'Mania and the Snow Luge.

The grotto is open every weekend between now and Christmas Eve.