BEXLEY’S mayor has joined forces with the Legal Services Commission to help people who may find themselves in debt over Christmas.

The commission offers a free, Government-funded service called Community Legal Advice (CLA), a helpline and website, which provide confidential and impartial help.

John Sirodcar, regional director for the commission, said: “Our advisors can help people access benefits and create a budget to plan debt repayments, which can help to pay for Christmas costs.”

He added: “Our helpline sees a huge increase in January from callers struggling with unmanageable debts.

“It does not have to be the case.”

The commission enlisted the help of mayor Councillor Nick O’Hare who dressed as Father Christmas and went out in Bexleyheath Broadway to publicise the service.

You can call the advice service on 0845 345 4345.

Calls cost 4p a minute but you can ask an advisor to call back if you are worried about the cost of the call.

Or you can go to