Downham Market shows support for toys and tins festive appeal

Cuddly toys, boxes of biscuits and tinned food were some of the many items donated by generous Downham Market residents this week.

The Salvation Army's annual Christmas Toys and Tins appeal visited the market town on Wednesday as part of its tour around the county.

The campaign runs from November 21 to December 17 to help people get into the spirit of Christmas by spreading cheer to those in need.

The county-wide appeal has been running for a number of years and has helped more than 3,000 people and 1,000 households across Norfolk.

Major William Fraser, from the Salvation Army, said: 'The appeal just gets bigger and bigger all the time.

'It all started when a Salvation Army officer came up with the idea to help those Norfolk residents in need at Christmas and it's grown from there.

'The response from Downham Market has been brilliant – even though it has been bitterly cold.

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'The goods we collect get boxed up by volunteers and then go to those who are on their own, or those living on the street this Christmas.

'We have also helped families in the past – like one family a couple of years ago who were devastated after their house burnt down a week before Christmas.'

Last year 1,500 boxes filled with children's toys, treats for teenagers, boxes of chocolates, sweets and toiletries were collected and distributed.

Anyone wishing to donate goods before the end of the campaign can pop along to the Salvation Army shops in Hunstanton or King's Lynn.

Donations should not be gift wrapped to help volunteers arrange them into hampers and parcels.