Children of less well-off families in Banbury will receive a visit from Father Christmas this year following a big response to the mayor’s Christmas Toy Appeal.
The appeal, organised by Banbury Town Council for the past 17 years, was at risk of not going ahead this year following the closure of the town’s children centres where toys were distributed. But the Sunshine Centre stepped in.
Mayor Shaida Hussain, pictured, said: “The wonderful gifts will make a fantastic difference to children who would otherwise have had an empty Christmas when many of their friends would have had lots of presents.
“The Sunshine Centre stepped in to rescue the appeal – really at the 11th hour. It looked as though there would not be a collection this year which would have meant a bleak Christmas for many less-fortunate children.
“I hope a way can be found to keep the appeal going in years to come. It’s an important Christmas event and it means a lot to many children.”