A CHARITY shop is set to hosts its annual Christmas event despite having lost half its stock to a fire.

Age UK, in Cockerton, will be open from 4pm to 7pm on Saturday November 24 for the Christmas light switch-on.

Every year, the charity saves up Christmas stock from January in order to hold a one-night Christmas bonanza where its shelves are filled with only seasonal goods.

However, the store faced setbacks after a fire on Skinnergate in July, next to Age UK's Darlington branch, meant staff lost seven months of donations

Antony Mitton, store manager for the Cockerton branch, said the loss was unfortunate but staff are still looking forward to the night.

He said: “We lost a lot of stock that we were saving for our Christmas event.

“Nobody has been allowed back in that building so we don’t actually know how much of it we lost but we will push forward and we still have got quite a bit to get out on the day

“It was quite a success last time and it’s been quite a success in the previous years. It’s a nice event for our volunteers and customers."