Santa Claus lives closer to home than you really think!

Contrary to popular belief, 'Santa Claus' is not living in snowy Lapland as we all previously thought. Instead, he is alive and well, though probably not delivering too many presents, in deepest, darkest Surrey.

It seems that he's not the only festive jester this Christmas in the UK. To join in with the winter festivities, other bizarre Christmas names include 'Santa', 'Bethlehem' and 'Christmas' according to the latest research from EuroDirect, one of the world's leading suppliers of consumer data and market intelligence.

For those who are discontent with naming their latest offspring 'Jack' or 'Emily' like the rest of the nation, instead can name them after various Christmas festivities. For those who prefer a French twist on the whole Christmas theme, 'Noel' proves popular as a first name with 15,580 individuals, followed by 'Holly' with 7,762 individuals. Other festive names include 431 'Rudolf's', 196 'Santa's' and a modest 42 'Christmas's'.

And for the more religious amongst us, 'Jesus Christ' may have sacrificed himself for the lives of others, but he's now alive and well living in both Lancashire and West Yorkshire. Not only that, his parent's first names, 'Mary' and 'Joseph', both prove popular with 418,588 names and 102,304 names throughout the country respectively.

For the Christmas surname stakes, 18,595 'Berry's' exist, followed by 956 'Christmas' surnames and 540 'Sleigh's'. Continuing with the Christmas theme, there are 190 'Manger's' and three 'Bethlehem's'. People have even gone so far as to name their houses with the Christmas theme, including 17 'Greenland's' and three 'Bethlehem's'.

John Dobson, Managing Director, EuroDirect said:
"Christmas is a time for festivities and fun for both families and friends to celebrate. It's nice to see that people are taking their festivities one step further and celebrating by not only naming their offspring but also their properties after Christmas themes!"

*The EuroDirect research is taken from analysis of their 'Data Exchange' universe of over 43 million UK adult consumers which is available for direct marketing activity. Data Exchange includes data from the 2004 Edited Electoral Roll and Companies House as well as Lifestyle, Transactional and Financial data.


Notes to Editors

About the Callcredit Information Group
Callcredit Information Group brings together experts across the fields of credit referencing, marketing services, interactive solutions and consultative analytics to enable our client base of businesses and consumers to make informed decisions using our innovative products and services. The group is made up of two complementary divisions:

Marketing Solutions, providing specialist knowledge in customer analytics, consumer targeting, database building and hosting, marketing communications, business modelling and market analysis through three market leaders in their own fields: EuroDirect, Broadsystem and GMAP Consulting.

Credit Solutions, encompassing Callcredit, Legatio and DecisionMetrics - specialists in credit risk, ID verification services and tracing tools.

About EuroDirect
EuroDirect, the marketing services business within Callcredit information group and is one of the UK's leading marketing suppliersThe company is well established in the field of direct marketing. Clients include over 40% of the UK's top 1,000 companies, including three of the top five largest multi nationals Examples are Npower, Airmiles, Capital One, Scottish and Southern, Barclaycard and HBOS. EuroDirect is a prime supplier of consumer data, targeting and segmentation systems, credit marketing services and software and technologies to help marketers undertake consumer profiling, analysis, targeting, data management, market analysis and decision support. EuroDirect also works internationally and has developed a suite of international segmentation tools under the CAMEO brand.