EAST Linton’s favourite cheeky elf has been touring the county and Edinburgh this festive period, raising money for the Edinburgh Children’s Hospital Charity (ECHC) along the way.

The 10ft-tall homemade elf has returned for his festive tour for the second year, and has expanded the areas in which he’s visited.

The elf’s body is made from felt, wadding, plastic pipe and papier-mâché, with his nose, ears and hair being sculpted from a polystyrene cake base.

From a trip up Arthur’s Seat to attending the opening of East Linton’s new railway station, the elf has been kept busy over December.

Starting his tour with a trip to East Linton’s Christmas lights switch-on, the elf then visited Arthur’s Seat before heading to the Usher Hall.

East Lothian Courier: A nice meal was enjoyed at The Dome in EdinburghA nice meal was enjoyed at The Dome in Edinburgh

After going to the Botanical Gardens, Camera Obscura, The Dome and The Royal Yacht Britannia, the elf stopped off to visit both Easter Road and Tynecastle, home to Hibernian and Heart of Midlothian Football Clubs respectively.

But his tour was not all about sightseeing – the elf also stopped off to help those at Soul Food Edinburgh, who provide meals to homeless people in the Capital, before visiting the Royal Hospital for Children and Young People, meeting with staff and patients.

Back home in East Linton, the elf made sure not to miss out on a bit of East Lothian history as he visited East Linton Railway Station for the arrival of the first train upon its opening on December 13.

East Lothian Courier: The elf took a seat in the dugout at TynecastleThe elf took a seat in the dugout at Tynecastle

Elizabeth Vokurka, who is responsible for creating the elf, told the Courier: “It has been quite a busy month for the elf.

“He has particularly enjoyed his visits across Edinburgh and it was also a huge honour for him to be at the East Linton lights switch-on.

“He has also been collecting donations for ECHC, trying to spread a little bit of extra joy for those young people in hospital this Christmas.

“He very much enjoyed visiting the hospital.

“He had a bit of a fever that day, so he got checked over and then visited some of the staff and patients.

“One of the young patients gave him a sticker which read ‘I was amazing’ for his bravery at the hospital.”

The elf has raised, in donations from the public, just over £2,000 for the charity.

East Lothian Courier: Staff at the Royal Hospital for Children and Young People enjoyed having the elf come visitStaff at the Royal Hospital for Children and Young People enjoyed having the elf come visit

Pippa Johnston, deputy CEO of ECHC, said: “Every year, together with our friends at NHS Lothian, ECHC works hard to make time spent in hospital a little bit brighter.

“We can’t stop the pain or prevent children from having to spend Christmas in hospital, but we can deliver some festive joy and happiness to them and their families.

“We rely solely on donations and kindness to be able to do this, so we are enormously grateful to the East Linton Elf for supporting our fundraising with these wonderful Christmas adventures and festive frolics around Edinburgh!”

The elf is set to wrap up his tour at the end of the festive period, but Elizabeth said that he might well be back next year.

She said: “It has been a lot of fun, but also a lot of work. Trying to arrange visits is not easy, but we have had a lot of interest.

“We will see what happens next year but, if there is a desire for him to come back out, I am sure he will.”

Donations can be made to the elf’s fundraiser at justgiving.com/page/EastLintonElfInEdinburgh