BEARS are needed to build a giant teddy mountain to support vulnerable children at Christmas.

Blackburn-based Secret Santa is planning to distribute 1,000 sacks of gifts to the most disadvantaged families in Blackburn, Darwen and surrounding areas in time for Christmas.

Each sack contains seven gifts and the recipients would otherwise receive nothing on Christmas morning.

It is hoped the mountain, currently growing in the window of the Secret Santa shop in The Mall Blackburn, will contain enough to ensure each child gets a bear.

Phil Boulding set up Secret Santa with his wife Karen in 2017 after deciding to give something back to the community where he has lived and worked all his life.

Mr Boulding said: “Every child needs a teddy, they are with you through thick and thin through your childhood. I want to make sure everyone has the chance to own one.”

Loraine Jones, General Manager of The Mall Blackburn, said: “Phil and Karen have done such amazing work in the area in the last two years and we wanted to help them spread their message and festive cheer even further in 2019.

“The teddy bear mountain is a wonderful idea and we want to do everything we can to make sure that each sack contains a teddy.”