LOCAL schools have given generously to a food bank's Christmas Hamper Appeal.

Children and staff from Prudhoe West Academy, Ovingham Middle School and Prudhoe Castle First School have all collected for the Miners Lamp Community Cafe and Hub, West Wylam.

Last year the charity, which also runs a school uniform scheme, delivered 100 hampers to those in need and facing Christmas alone.

The food bank will continue to operate over the festive season.

"Last Christmas, we were called on by Northumberland Communities Together to help families and individuals across Tynedale as far as Haltwhistle, although these areas are outside our normal area of delivery", said trustee, Russ Greig. "We are the only food bank in the Tynedale area that provides support over the Christmas period.

"We’re delighted with the response from local primary and middle schools who have collected for our hampers and food bank and we hope our hampers make Christmas that little bit better for many people.

"We have seen a large rise in those seeking support from our foodbank through a combination of the loss of £20 Universal Credit uplift and increased energy, food and fuel prices which continue to put household budgets under increased pressure."

The Friends of Eastwoods Park, who own and manage the service, have five dedicated drop off points:

Branch End Spar - Stocksfield

Central Convenience Store - Stocksfield

The Original Factory Shop - Prudhoe

Coop Garage - Prudhoe

Coop - Wylam

Hampers will be distributed across the local area on December 22.

Anyone seeking assistance over the Christmas holidays should contact Northumberland Communities Together on 01670 620015 between 9am to 6pm, seven days a week, or via email: NCT@northumberland.gov.uk