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Santa's Suitcase gift appeal boosts food banks


Travel agents are calling on customers to help pack Santa’s Suitcase with gifts, aiming to bring the holiday spirit to families using local food banks in the run-up to Christmas.

Lincolnshire Co-op travel branches are asking people to donate unwrapped presents to the appeal. Suggestions include small toys, books, puzzles, knitted items, chocolates and toiletry gift sets. The gifts will then be donated to each outlet’s local food bank or community larder.

The campaign is running until Friday 14th December. All 14 Lincolnshire Co-op travel branches are taking part and are supporting the following groups:

• Carlton Centre Travel in Alexander Walk, Lincoln – Lincoln Community Larder

• Tritton Road Travel at the Moorland Centre, Lincoln – Lincoln Community Larder

• Boston Travel at Oldrids Department Store in Bargate – Boston Foodbank

• Gainsborough Travel in Market Place – Salvation Army

• Retford Travel in Market Square – Salvation Army

• Grantham Travel in High Street – The Trussell Trust

• Grimsby Travel in The Bull Ring – Daily Bread Food Larder

• Horncastle Travel in Bridge Street – Horncastle Community Larder

• Long Sutton Travel in High Street – Sutton Bridge Food Bank  

• Louth Travel in Market Place – Louth Community Larder

• Market Rasen in Market Place – Lincoln Community Larder

• Newark Travel in Middle Gate – Newark Food Bank

• Sleaford Travel in Southgate – Sleaford Community Larder

• Spalding –  Spalding Agape

Lincolnshire Co-op’s Head of Travel Wayne Dennett said he hoped lots of the branches’ customers would get behind the appeal. 

“Local food banks are providing a valued service across our area,” he said. “The gifts we’re collecting through the Santa’s Suitcase campaign will help those food banks give families who maybe struggling something extra this festive season.”

The majority of Lincolnshire Co-op’s food stores also have collection points for local food banks and community larders. Customers donate packets, tins and dried food by leaving items inside a marked collection bin.