Shops eager to help as appeal gets a boost

Staff at Smyths Toys are supporting the Give a Gift appeal
Staff at Smyths Toys are supporting the Give a Gift appeal
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It’s getting easier to spread some joy this Christmas and get involved in The Gazette’s Give a Gift appeal.

Two resort stores have added themselves to the list of official drop-off points for presents, which will be delivered to patients at Blackpool Victoria Hospital on Christmas Day.

It just seemed to make sense because people come here for their Christmas shopping anyway and it’s nice if people associate Smyths with Christmas and giving

Anyone looking to donate a gift to the appeal, which aims to brighten up the festive period for those spending the time in a hospital bed, can now drop gifts off at Smyths Toys or Asda, in Marton.

Smyths Toys’ announcement follows on from its pledge on Tuesday to donate “hundreds of pounds” worth of presents to the cause.

Nick Sheridan, store manager at Smyths Toys, on Vicarage Lane, said: “It’s something that I wanted to get into anyway and I noticed looking at the list of drop-off points that there wasn’t that many.

“It just seemed to make sense because people come here for their Christmas shopping anyway and it’s nice if people associate Smyths with Christmas and giving.”

Asda, on Cherry Tree Road, and Smyths join the likes of Marks & Spencer, Morrisons, Booths and Poppy & Jacks Nursery in offering itself up as a ‘gift drop’.

Asda community colleague, Neil Herdman said: “We choose a local charity every year to do a collection for and this year we’ve chosen Blue Skies. Last year it was Cash for Kids and the year before that is was Brian House.”

Ann Hedley, head of fundraising at Blue Skies Hospital fund thanked the stores for their support.

She said: “We have been overwhelmed by the generosity of the stores who have given up their valuable space to support us this year.

“We have already had some calls from members of the public asking about the drop off points and it just shows how many people think about others at this time of year.

“Here at Blue Skies, we are always grateful for every donation we receive but those gifts bought for others at Christmas just have that special sparkle of kindness about them. We can’t thank the readers enough.”

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