SANTA Claus was moved to tears when he received a special request from a Blackburn family.

They did not ask for the latest toys or presents to make their Christmas special. Instead they had a simple request.

"This year, could you please look after my lovely daddy in heaven," wrote seven-year-old John Jr Green.

"I love my daddy very much so could you, Santa, please tell him for me," added his sister Diane, 10.

And her brother Christian, 12, told Santa: "I love my dad very much and I don't want anything happening to him while he is up in heaven."

Their father, John Green, of Holmbrook Close, died earlier this month from a heart attack after he collapsed in a phone booth while trying to call an ambulance. His widow, Elaine, said: "Christmas won't be the same this year. They don't want toys. They just want to know their dad is all right."

She got the children to hand in their letters to Santa when he appeared at Blackburn Market.

But their pleas have not fallen on deaf ears - Santa has written back to them with a very special Christmas message.

He told them: "As you know, it is the duty of Father Christmas to try and give some happiness to children at Christmastime, and I can assure you that your daddy, who has recently had to go to heaven, is being well looked after.

"He loves you and misses you all but has work to do which took him away from you.

"He wants you to look after each other, be good children, help your mummy and have a happy Christmas."

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