A gentleman in a red robe dropped in at an old folks’ care home to wish “a merry Christmas” to its residents at their annual festive bash.

But he wasn’t really Santa — just the Mayor of Islington turning up in his red robe and gold chain of office.

Cllr Gary Heather’s mayoral hat was black anyway, rather than Santa’s traditional red, when he looked in at Cheverton Lodge care home in Archway.

He was welcomed by the home’s general manager Krisztina Vadnai and her nursing team.

“We were all delighted to meet the mayor,” Krisztina said. “The residents had a wonderful afternoon.”

Families and members of the community joined residents for their seasonal party with the mayor, even if it wasn’t Santa, singing along to the Christmas entertainment by Ian James and tucking into home-baked treats prepared by the home’s chef — and of course mulled wine.

The festive fun is not just for Christmas but for life. The home in Cheverton Road says it runs a varied “life enrichment” programme that keeps its residents active with a a daily choice of engaging physical, mental and spiritual activities tailored to their interests and abilities.

Cheverton Lodge is run by Barchester Healthcare, one of the UK’s largest care home and hospital groups. It provides nursing and residential care, as well as respite and long-term care.