THE theft of a charity collection tin from a church in York has led good-hearted visitors to leave more than £200 in donations.

The theft happened at St Helen’s Church in St Helen’s Square last week, as Cards For Good Causes volunteers worked to raise money for dozens of local and national charities with a card sale.

Manager Janet Wilson runs the card sales at St Helen’s and St Martin’s churches in York, and said she was disappointed that someone would steal from a charity, but the public response was completely unexpected.

She said: "Since the theft we've had an amazing response. Some very kind people have come in and given us donations.

"We've had donations of about £250 in total from about five or six people. I think more people have been generous putting in pound coins as well, if someone spends £8 on cards, they've said 'keep the two'.

"In fact, one gentleman gave us a cheque for £150, which was very kind of him. Someone else has given us their money box contents, in 2ps and 1ps, we've had £5 from various people, so it's been an amazing response and we're very grateful for the donations."

Janet said the largest donation had come from a farmer who lived outside of York, and the response had been completely unexpected.

She also said the incident highlighted the importance of safety and securing charity boxes where possible, and said the replacement box was now held in place with a secure, metal chain.

Janet said: "It's just a sad reflection of today's climate."