A Hexham shop is to put up their annual 'angel tree' to ensure children using foodbanks or shelters are to be given something this Christmas.

The idea came from EuroGarages BP Hexham SPAR manager Alan Atkinson, who saw a local church social media post about the tree called an 'angel tree'.

He said: "I saw it four years ago on Facebook and thought it was a great idea. At the start, we only managed to reach 40 kids but as years have gone past we reached more. Last year we reached 110."

"The aim of the angel tree is that children, who are from families who use a foodbank or are in a shelter, are given an angle shape. They write things on the angel of what they would like for Christmas and it is put on the tree. The angel does not have the name or location just the gender and age of the child.

Alan continues: "We hang these Angels on our tree in store so customers can collect an Angel, buy a gift from the list or as many as they like off the list. The Angel and gifts are then returned to us, unwrapped."

Alan gladly does this appeal every year but feels like this year children and families should be supported more.

He said: "We love doing it and I think for this year we should help those who are unfortunate even more because of Covid. Foodbanks have noticed that they are been used even more than usual now so many people are asking for help. I think it is great to give back to community especially when everyone has been through a tough time because of Covid and restrictions.

"That is why this year, we have made sure to give out more angels to Hexham Food Bank, Hexham Kids bank and West Northumberland Early Help Team."

Anyone who wishes to participate in the campaign will find that angels will be available on the tree for customers from Wednesday November 17. The store also asks that presents to be back in store by December 15.