STAFF at Sainsbury’s said farewell to their year-long charity partner the Samaritans with the handover of a cheque for more than £4,000.

It brought the total amount of money they raised to £8,298 following a busy year of events and collections at the supermarket chain’s Bridgemead store.

A fashion show, mince pie-eating contest and special offers on flower-wrapping helped reach the store’s highest-ever fundraising total, to the delight of the charity workers.

Simon Belcher, PR ambassador for Sainsbury’s, said workers chose the Samaritans after an evocative pitch to the staff council and was a worthy cause.

He said: “We were gobsmacked by their presentation – it was brilliant and we thought we had to pick them. There but for the grace of God go us all.

“They were a great charity and it’s our best total ever. They have been very involved from the start and were great sports. Our customers and staff really got behind it as well.

“The presentation of our £4,000 with the cash they had already raised to make it £8,298 was a kind of goodbye to them, as we will have a new charity of the year from June.

“Customers can vote for their favourites and the three top ones go through to the staff council.”

To vote visit