A CHRISTMAS tree farm is stepping in to help a hospice with its annual tree collection service.

Since opening for the festive season on December 1, staff at Croft Christmas Trees, near Darlington, have been encouraging their customers to sign up for the St Teresa’s Hospice Christmas tree collection service.

The service allows people to dispose of their Christmas trees after the holidays in an environmentally friendly way and raise money for the hospice.

With support from Darlington Rotary Club, last year’s collection raised £2,406 for St Teresa’s Hospice.

Hospice director Jane Bradshaw said: “Last year’s Christmas tree collection was a runaway success, thanks to the support of Darlington Rotary Club and our local Christmas tree sellers.

“In fact, we collected twice as many trees in half the time, due to gaining experience the year before, and we’re hoping to do even better this year.

“The message is simple - let us take the hassle out of your Christmas clear-up, in an environmentally friendly way, which helps your local hospice.”

Christmas tree collections will take place on January 5 and 6 next year. To register a Christmas tree, visit darlingtonhospice.org.uk