A MAGICAL grotto bursting with festive characters and twinkling lights is raising money for two charities.

Shaun Buckley started turning his Winsford garden into a winter wonderland for his disabled daughter Maddie, 14.

"I started decorating the house 10 years ago," said Shaun, 45, of Arkwright Close. "To begin with, I put a few lights up to stimulate my daughter who is disabled. It gets bigger and bigger every year."

Shaun started raising money for Hebden Green Community School to thank staff for all the care and support they offer Maddie and her family.

Five years ago, when Shaun developed muscular dystrophy, he decided to share the proceeds with the Neuromuscular Centre, which gives him practical help, treatment and specialist advice.

Shaun has set up a JustGiving page and hopes to raise a record sum for the two charities.

Winsford Guardian:

Christmas songs play all the time to create a festive atmosphere

"Maddie loves the lights," said Shaun, who has three children and four step daughters. "We want to thank Hebden Green for all their help and also the NMC Centre who help us with lots of issues and point us in the right direction. I go there for physio and use the hydrotherapy pool in the school. The centre gives us a lifeline."

Christmas songs play all day as lights illuminate snowmen, polar bears, penguins, deer and flamingoes.

Each year, new attractions and extra lights are added to the huge display.

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Shaun and wife Diane made a nativity stable a few years ago, featuring Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus.

Winsford Guardian:

Shaun and Diane Buckley created a nativity crib in front of the house

"This year I made a nice big sleigh with reindeer and Santa," said Shaun, who switched on the lights a week early to cheer everyone up after such a sad year. "We have projectors and lots of inflatables. There is a rail across the drive with shooting stars, bells and icicle lights dangling.

"It took us 10 days to put them up with my family helping."

Thousands of lights have to be checked before the intricate designs can come to life. The conifer and arch alone have 2,000 lights and three tubes are illuminated with almost 5,000 bulbs.

"We live in an end house so we get a lot of people driving up here to have a look," he said. "I love doing it."

Winsford Guardian:

Snowmen wave as festive characters sit in an igloo beside reindeer

Shaun worked as a machine operator when he was 18 and then a security guard until his health deteriorated.

He is constantly looking for new ideas.

"I'm already working on plans for next year," said Shaun. "I've got the driveway and path to fill. I'm constantly looking for new lights and figures."

Winsford Guardian:

Visitors can made donations at the grotto or online

To donate visit justgiving.com/crowdfunding/shaun-buckley-2