An articulated lorry bound for Eastern Europe will be pulling up at Grosvenor Church in Barnstaple tomorrow (Thursday) to load up 2,800 shoeboxes of gifts destined for poverty-stricken children.

Once again the church has hosted the annual appeal for Operation Christmas Child, with shoeboxes containing essential items, toys, games, stationery and luxuries donated from all corners of North Devon and beyond.

Organiser Elaine Poyner said Grosvenor was the processing centre for the whole of North Devon for the appeal run by Samaritan's Purse.

She said: "We have had boxes from everywhere, from as far down as Bude and Launceston right up to Lynton.

"We have a new team of volunteers this year and a big thank you to them as well as all the people that have donated."

Elaine said people are very welcome to begin collecting for their shoeboxes for next year and can contact her at the church for me information on 01271 323725.