The Grinch has turned over a new leaf – at least for the next couple of weeks in Whitehaven.

After taking over the body of Kerry Ackerley, the Grinch has been raising money for Highfield House, the care home where she works.

“We haven’t been able to do any fundraising this year because of Covid," she explained.

“We have not had bingo, raffles or any other events that we hold, so I decided to do something on my own.”

The mother of six children aged six to 12, she said with all those youngsters in the house, she sometimes feels like a Grinch so thought the costume would suit her.

“I do sometimes feel a bit like the Grinch but more often not," she laughed.

“The children love it to the extent that I will be coming down in the costume on Christmas Day.

“I am 37 going on 18. The children tell me I am a nutter but they all love it.”

In fact, the whole family has entered into the spirit. Her partner (“my silent partner”) is building a scene outside their front door so people can see her emerge from her Grinch house.

“I am already getting a lot of hoots from people driving by and others are walking past to see me.”

She said she is putting out pots with the name of the care home for people who want to donate.

In the opposite to Grinch sentiments, however, she said people need only donate if they wish. Otherwise she is quite happy for them just to look.

She is a dedicated Grinch, adding: “I am on nightshift at the moment so will be coming home and getting into my greenery. But it is worth it.”

Grinch or not, social distancing rules still apply and Kerry is even wearing all her PPE beneath the costume.

She will visit St Gregory’s School but only to peek into windows.

She will also visit the Rainbow Pre-School where she will get to see the children within safeguarding guidelines.

The Grinch will make an appearance at the care home next week.

Going against the Grinch's intent to steal Christmas cheer, she acknowledges that instead she will be bringing lots of people some festive fun instead.

Kerry said she will continue to appear as the Grinch until Christmas Eve and anyone who wants to donate can see her at her house.

Kerry lives on Low Road, and her house is easy to spot. It’s where the Grinch lives!