A TOTAL of 135 gifts have been purchased and donated by shoppers at a Shrewsbury shopping centre. 

The donations were part of the Santa’s Little Stars Toy Campaign at The Darwin shopping Centre, coordinated by the Little Stars charity, with visitors also donating £210 via the charity’s JustGiving page.

The appeal asked shoppers to donate new, unwrapped toys in their original packaging at various locations at The Darwin. One hundred and twenty-five local children will now receive wrapped, Christmas gifts – an incredible achievement and testament to the generosity within the Shropshire community.

The Little Stars vision is to ensure babies and children across Shropshire have access to the essentials that they need to feel safe and secure. The organisation’s mission is to alleviate the emotional stress and financial pressures families face by providing quality essentials for babies, children, and pregnant women.

Since the charity was formed, they have supported 1,844 children within the community since launching in 2020 and handed out an astounding 42,314 essential items to children.

Darwin centre manager Kevin Lockwood said: “Yet again I’m amazed by how generous the people of Shrewsbury can be. This year with the cost of living being so hard for so many people, I’m humbled that people within our community are still so giving.

"I met the team at Little Stars a year ago and was very moved by what they were achieving within Shropshire, and I knew we had to support them however we could.

"A special thanks to our tenants for letting gifts be dropped within their premises and of course to our shoppers for being so kind. This is a very important charity and I know we will continue to support them in the future, in a variety of ways.”

Little Stars director Leanne Simcoe said: “We are extremely thankful for the support The Darwin has given for our Santa’s Little Stars campaign. The generosity from the shoppers donating to our Christmas campaign has been overwhelming.

"This year we have seen a sharp increase in requests for gifts and have provided presents to 415 children who would otherwise go without. The kindness from everyone involved has ensured that every child referred to us has received a gift this Christmas.”