Youngsters from 9th Chippenham Brownies and 3rd Chippenham Rainbows joined the Salvation Army's Sunday School and congregation for a special Toy and Gift Christingle service.

The family event at the Salvation Army headquarters in Foghamshire brought a pile of generous donations for this year's Christmas Toy Appeal, when toys and presents are collected for needy families so their children do not go without.

During the service everyone made a Christingle with an orange, candle, sweets and ribbon - and remembered those less fortunate.

This week the Salvation Army staff and volunteers are busy sorting the many toys and presents donated by local people ready for distribution to families identified by social services.

Minister Major Dawn McGarvey said: "We have piles of toys on tables and people are sorting them.

"But it isn't too late to make a donation - we are still collecting until the Friday before Christmas."

She also sent out a plea for more gifts for the youngest children, those aged up to three years old.

Families needing help are referred by local organisations who know their circumstances.

Last year the Salvation Army in Chippenham, thanks to the support of the people of Chippenham, were able to provide a hundred food boxes, as well as gifts for over 250 children.

Donations of toys, which must be new and unwrapped, are needed for boys and girls aged up to 16.

The Salvation Army's Toy Appeal has donation drop-off points at estate agents Goodman, Warren and Beck, in Market Place, Chippenham, as well as Wilko Chippenham, Wilko Devizes and Sainsbury’s Chippenham.

Donations can also be taken to the Salvation Army headquarters on a Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday mornings. Donations of money are also welcome and can be sent to The Salvation Army at the same address.