Martial Arts Instructors Cheer Kids Up By Roaming The Streets In Spider-Man Costumes
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Two heroic martial arts instructors are putting smiles on children's faces amid the nationwide lockdown - by roaming the streets dressed as Spider-Man.
Andrew Baldock, 44, has been donning his ultra-lifelike superhero costume and entertaining the kids of Stockport, Lancshire, for the past week alongside his friend and fellow martial arts instructor Jason Baird, 34.
Brilliant pictures taken while they did the rounds show them in dramatic superhero poses as adoring children watch on in awe.
Andrew, a dad-of-five, said: "This is a very difficult time for everyone so I just wanted to do something to put a smile on people's faces.
"The reaction I have got from kids when I go out has been incredible, they absolutely love it. If I can make someone happy, even if it's just for a moment, then it's worth going out."
Andrew explained they only going out once a day within walking distance from their homes and they are keeping well away from any residents and passersby.
He said: "I fully understand there are rules in place at the moment and I'm making sure that none of them are broken when I go out."
Andrew came up with the idea after hosting a digital martial arts class in his outfit and seeing the 'enormous smiles' on his young students' faces.
He said: "Everyone enjoyed it so much that after the session I decided to go outside with it on to see what me neighbours thought. The reaction I got from local kids was amazing, they all absolutely loved it.
"Lots of parents took pictures of me entertaining their kids and posted them online and it all went a bit mad from there. People from all over Stockport are asking me to go and visit their street."
Andrew had his costume from his days working in retail, when he used to dress up to attend events in. When Jason Baird got wind of what he was up to he asked a friend to borrow their Spider-Man outfit and followed suit.
Jason, a dad-of-two, set up the 'Stockport Spider-Men' Facebook page and the dynamic duo have been going out in their respective Stockport neighbourhoods since.
Andrew said: "We have hundreds of parents asking if we can go and visit their streets to pay their children a visit.
"We will do as much as we can, but obviously we do have to be careful about where we and how long we stay out for at a time like this."
The UK government is urging people to stay indoors wherever possible and avoid going within six foot of people when out and about.
Jason and Andrew hope their exploits will encourage other people around the world to don their own superhero costumes.
Andrew said: "There superhero world is huge and there are plenty of other ones people can dress as. I'd love to see people around the country and maybe even around the world doing what Jason and I are. I think the world could do with a bit of fun at a time like this."
Let's all bring some positivity, support and fun to anyone who might find themselves in isolation as a result of the coronavirus spread. Need some entertainment? Join Isolation Nation: https://www.facebook.com/groups/coronasupport/