MORE than 1,000 messages of love and celebration have so far been left on a public Christmas tree in Darlington.

By inviting the public to make a donation in exchange for a message on the Giving to Life Tree, in the Cornmill Centre, St Teresa’s Hospice is hoping to raise over £5,000.

Among those who have visited the tree make a donation is Darlington’s mayor Councillor Paul Baldwin.

Since adopting St Teresa’s Hospice as one of his official charities, Coun Baldwin has been vocal in his support of the local charity.

He said: “At this time of year we need to be thinking more than ever about people who need help. One of the ways we can show we care is by donating to St Teresa’s Hospice – a local charity for local people.

“Please donate whatever you can, anywhere between one pence and a million pounds. In addition, I’d like to take this chance to wish everyone at St Teresa’s and everyone in Darlington a very merry Christmas.”

Messages may be added to the tree until Christmas Eve, where they will hang until the New Year. A blessing ceremony will be held on January 7, at 11am, which all are welcome to attend.