AMONG the decorations and gifts on display at a Weymouth department store is a Christmas Toy Appeal collection pot filling up with donations.

Debenhams in New Bond Street is busy collecting loose change for needy children across Dorset as customers stock up on festive treats.

Store manager Brett Sharman said: “The Toy Appeal is something we have done in the store for a number of years and every year we receive a great response.

“All the donations go to help those who are less fortunate than we are and most importantly, it goes to help needy children who deserve a nice Christmas.

“If we can support that in any way, we are more than happy to do it.”

Last year the Echo office in Weymouth was filled with sacks of presents before social workers and carers took them to deliver to very excited children across the county.

This year the Echo is hoping to bring Christmas cheer to just as many children.

Toy collection bins can be found in a number of locations across Dorset ready for donations of toys, puzzles, books and arts and crafts materials.

The Dorset Echo on the Granby Industrial Estate and the Dorchester office in Antelope Walk are also accepting donations.

We are also looking for businesses to donate £100 to the appeal and ensure that every child who has signed up receives a gift this Christmas.

Mr Sharman said: “From our store’s point of view, the Toy Appeal has always been very well supported in the past.

“We receive lots of donations and are pleased by the generosity shown by customers.”

Here's how you can get involved

Businesses: Please donate £100. In previous years this has been amazingly successful and has been the main way that the Toy Appeal has been able to provide toys and gifts to needy children.

Every donation is gratefully received – and all those donating £100 will be featured in the Echo. To donate £100 please call Debbie Hellaby on 01305 830815 or email <&bh""><&eh> Last year more than 30 businesses donated to the toy appeal.

Readers – £3 text: Text ECHOTOY to 80360.

Texts cost £3 plus your normal operator text charge.

Text lines are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Service provided by Newsquest Media Group.

After network charges which vary between networks, all profit which is approx £2 per text will be donated to the Toy Appeal.

Lines are open now and will be disconnected on 14/12/2011 at 23.59pm.