Sunderland transformed into a city of angels overnight
Christmas came early to Sunderland today, with thousands of tiny angels appearing across the city overnight.
More than 5,000 knitted angels have been placed around school and landmarks such as Penshaw Monument for people to find and take home.
People are advised to keep their eyes peeled around Penshaw, be vigilant at The Bridges, see what they can spot at the sea front, and search the city centre in particular for the little visitors.
The angels have been lovingly crafted by volunteers from churches across the city that belong to the Sunderland Connect Network, and are part of a national campaign to remind people of the origin of Christmas.
Angels are landing across the country with more than 51,000 being registered with www.christmasangel.net.
The festive figures are designed to bring a sprinkling of joy to anyone lucky enough to find one. It is hoped that families and individuals will enjoy joining in the hunt for the hand-crafted symbols of joy, love and peace.
An anonymous member of the Sunderland angel team said: "We are thrilled these angels are joining in the fun and can’t wait for people to find them on Friday morning.
"The reason we are doing this is to share God’s love and to bless our city of Sunderland in public places and community places with a Christmas message of hope and love.
"The reason for wanting to take part in the project was to show, like that first Christmas long ago, that God’s love can and still comes down to Earth.
"We hope that it will bring a smile and heartfelt warmth this Christmas”
"The message on each angel says ‘May God bless you with joy, love and peace this Christmas’ and encourages people to take the angel home.
"We hope people will share photos of the angels they’ve found using the hashtag #xmasangels."
Anyone interested in finding out more can visit the Sunderland Connect Network Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/sunderlandconnectnetwork/) for a video of volunteers releasing the angels into the city last night.