It will be a busy Christmas day for the Salvation Army in Newton Abbot this year.
On Christmas morning, the band will be visiting Newton Abbot Community Hospital where it will be playing Christmas carols.
Meanwhile, back at The Salvation Army hall on Union Street, a Christmas meal will be being prepared for members of the lunch club.
“We’ll also be inviting some local people who are experiencing homelessness to come along – there is a warm welcome at The Salvation Army for everyone,” said Major William Slade.
“Some of the local churches are putting the word out that we are putting on a Christmas dinner and all we ask is that anyone who wants to come along lets us know in advance so that we can cater for them.
“We are expecting 20-25 people and it’s for me it’s just the joy you get of seeing folk enjoy themselves and seeing folk enjoy each other’s company.
“A couple of years ago, we even had the mayor here and he took his coat off, rolled up his sleeves and was serving Christmas dinner.” The lead-up to Christmas is also a very busy time for The Salvation Army in Newton Abbot.
“From the second week of December, we’ve been making up food and toy parcels for the referrals that we’ll be getting from social services and local schools” said Major Slade.
“We run a local toy appeal and the local Tesco acts as a donation and collection point and has done so for the last four or five years and we make the parcels up in good time so that they can be delivered for Christmas.
“For the toys, we’ll get a list of the children’s ages and what sex they are we’ll make up parcels for them and social services will deliver them. “The band is busy at Christmas and we’re going to be at Stover Country Park for a carol service and there’ll be a bonfire there as well. It’s very popular and the council has to limit the numbers that attend because it’s so popular.
“We’re also going to be out in the town centre carolling with the band on the first and second Saturdays in December and then we’ll be visiting retirement homes in the area”.