Band helps keep up volunteers’ spirits

Local band, Hollywood and Vines perform for volunteers and Warehouse Manager, John Martin whilst packing shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child.

Local band, Hollywood and Vines perform for volunteers and Warehouse Manager, John Martin whilst packing shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child.

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CHARITY rockers put on a private gig for Operation Christmas Child volunteers.

The five-piece band Hollywood and Vines performed an intimate acoustic show for helpers of the charity while they packed shoeboxes in a Hendon warehouse.

The band have already taken part in a Band Aid-style Christmas album to raise money for the charity, but they were eager to do more in support of the cause.

The group wrote 12 tracks for the CD called the Christmas Project, with all money raised going to Operation Christmas child which delivers shoeboxes packed with Christmas presents to disadvantaged children around the world.

Frontman Paul Barber, 21, a music student from South Tyneside, said: “A lot of people have worked really hard on this project and we thought that the CD and the gig went hand in hand together.

“I’m like a big kid. I love Christmas and my Dad always says that you should give what you can, and to be able to do something like this at Christmas is great.”

Paul added: “I hope the volunteers liked it. We have been looking forward to it.”

The shoeboxes were packed in a warehouse in Hendon and staff were grateful for some music to keep spirits high as they packed the hundreds of boxes destined for Romania.

Volunteers in the warehouse worked to check and pack thousands of shoeboxes.

Washington resident Gail Watson, an area co-ordinator for Operation Christmas Child, said: “We normally don’t have any music playing so it was entertaining having the band play.

“Our volunteers will be working hard to pack 4,000 shoe boxes. We’ve already done about 8,000.”

As well as Paul’s band, Hollywood and Vines, artists The Railway Club, The Union Choir, Natasha Haws and Jen Stevens & the Hiccups also contributed songs to The Christmas Project CD.

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