Yorkshire Times
Weekend Edition
2:51 PM 16th November 2023

Donate Your Unwanted Toys

Family pub chain Hungry Horse is launching its Christmas toy donation initiative for a third consecutive year – following new research that reveals over two million UK children could go without a single present this Christmas.

The scheme, which saw more than 10,000 presents donated in 2022, is designed to provide gifts to those in need while helping parents declutter their homes by putting preloved toys to good use.

According to the data, nearly one in five UK parents (18%) know a child who won’t receive a present on 25 December this year, equating to an estimated 2.2m children in the UK.

Similarly, a stark 57% of mums, dads and guardians in the UK say they are worried about being able to afford presents for their kids this Christmas due to the cost of living. As a result, over four in five (83%) believe that more support is needed to ensure every child gets a present on the big day.

The pub chain has relaunched its annual ‘Toy Boxing Day’ scheme, installing an enormous four metre high, 450kg sack of presents in Manchester city centre to represent the millions of children who are facing the prospect of going without a gift this year.

“We believe that every child deserves the joy of a Christmas present,
Donation stations will be open in each of the 235 pubs across the UK between 14 November and 18 December 2023 to ensure any donated toys arrive with the children who need them most in time for the big day.

To get involved, all anyone who wants to donate has to do is head to their local Hungry Horse pub and drop any preloved, new or unused toys in the signposted area in pub.

Pubs will then supply the donated toys to a nominated local charity, which will provide them to those in need within the community during the lead up to Christmas.

The scheme comes at a time of need, with data revealing two thirds (66%) of parents will be forced to spend less on presents this year due to financial concerns, with almost four in five (79%) identifying Christmas as the most financially challenging time of year.

While last year’s ‘Toy Boxing Day’ was a huge success, with more than 10,000 presents repurposed, even more gifts are expected to be donated this year, with two thirds of parents (67%) saying they would be likely to donate their child’s unwanted toys to someone less fortunate.

Mums, dads and guardians will spend 13% less on presents for their children this year when compared to 2022, the study found, with total outlay going from an average of £217.50 to £188.85 per household.

Popular TV personality and mum-of-two Charlotte Dawson has pledged her support for the campaign.

She said:
"As a mum, I know how much Christmas means to kids and how excited they get when it’s time to open their presents on the big day.

"No child should have to go without that moment of joy.

“That’s why I wholeheartedly support Hungry Horse's 'Toy Boxing Day' scheme and its mission to ensure every child receives a gift this festive season.

"If you want to make a difference this year, box up some pre-loved toys and get them to your local pub today."

Sarah Williams, Senior Marketing Manager for Hungry Horse, added:
“We believe that every child deserves the joy of a Christmas present, and Hungry Horse is proud to continue its 'Toy Boxing Day' scheme for the third year running.

“Our aim is to help those feeling the pinch amid the cost of living crisis, while giving parents the opportunity to declutter their homes and make a difference at the same time.

"Together, we can ensure that no child goes without a gift this festive season and spread the true spirit of Christmas throughout our communities.”

To find your nearest Hungry Horse and make your own toy donation, click here