Fundraisers are getting into full swing for this year’s Kevin Jenkins OBE Newham Christmas Toy Appeal.  

There are various events to be hosted in aid of the appeal, which collects gifts and cash to ensure no local children miss out at Christmas. 

For example, a former Recorder editor is hoping to make a splash with his annual sponsored swim.   

Colin Grainger hopes to swim 50 breaststroke lengths - something he said was a “tough ask” due to his Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) diagnosis.  

According to the NHS, this is a lung condition with symptoms including breathlessness and frequent chest infections.  

Colin has dived in every year since the appeal started in the 1970s.   

“I am proud to be a patron of the toy appeal campaign, having been part of the appeal for the Recorder in all my positions from reporter to editor during my 40-plus years at the paper,” he said.  

“I have remained part of it as a patron since I left ten years ago next month.  

“I don’t think any of us involved in the campaign all those years ago ever dreamed it would still be as vital to the community 45 years later. But it is vital we get new gifts to young people who would otherwise go without.”  

Additionally, the Annual Christmas Quiz Night in aid of the appeal is returning once again. 

There will be a raffle on the night, and the winners will be given a shield and bottle of wine.  

It will take place on December 8 from 7pm at the Old Town Hall, Stratford. 

Doors open at 6.15pm, and attendees should bring their own refreshments. 

Kind-hearted motorcyclists are also gearing up to make their Christmas Toy Run for the appeal. 

Organiser John Pryke said the bikers will collect donations on a route carved out over many years of supporting the initiative.  

They start their journey at Triumph East London headquarters in Romford and ride to appeal organiser Ambition Aspire Achieve’s headquarters at the Terence Brown Arc in the Park. 

“We are really looking forward to another great day,” John said. “The appeal is so important to young people in Newham and we have been happy to lend our support for many years now. 

“We always get a great welcome wherever we are on the journeys and the appeal sums up how the community cares for one another." 

It will take place on December 10 and is staged with help from the Riders Who Want To Make A Difference group. 

AAA partners with the Recorder on the appeal, which launched on November 9 and has been running for 45 years.  

Donate to Colin’s swim at

Book a table for the quiz by emailing 

Donations to the bikers’ run can be made at 

The group also do the same route at Easter to provide chocolate eggs for youngsters.  

Find out more on their Facebook group, the East London Toy/Egg Run. 

Anyone who would like to donate new toys to the appeal can do so at the Terence Brown Arc in the Park hub in Bethell Avenue, Canning Town, from 9am until 5pm on Mondays to Fridays and between 10am and 2pm on Saturdays.  

Alternatively, buy a gift on AAA's Amazon wish list here, which has been curated to be suitable for those recieving donations.  

People can also donate money on a JustGiving page here.