Collect picture - Ray Hulse in 1996. Britain's longest serving Santa Claus is still bringing the magic of Christmas to children - after donning his festive suit for 58 years. See SWNS story SWMDsanta. Ray Hulse, has been playing Father Christmas since he was just 18 and has been spreading yuletide cheer to people of all ages for well over half a century. He has distributed thousands of gifts to gleeful kids to make their Christmas dreams come true since 1962 and raised over £50,000 for charity. Ray says he has always loved Christmas and was determined to spread the festive joy as much as he could and will even keep going until his 100th birthday. He created his first grotto at a simple Ford garage and since then has appeared in hundreds of supermarkets and schools across his home county of Shropshire.