A PROMOTION by a popular toy store has descended into chaos today with some parents queuing for hours to buy a stuffed teddy bear.

Build-A-Bear decided to run a 'Pay Your Age Day' event and asked parents to sign up online and head to a nearby branch to buy a teddy for as little as £1.

Stores across the country, including the company's branch at York Designer Outlet, have been overwhelmed by hoardes of parents and children hoping to bag a bargain.

At 12.30pm today a spokes man for York Designer Outlet said they would be accepting no more customers for the promotion: "'Pay Your Age’ Day event at all of Build-A-Bear’s UK locations has been overwhelming and unprecedented, including here at McArthurGlen York Designer Outlet.

"The crowds have greatly exceeded expectations and as a result the store is no longer able to accept additional guests for this event.

"We are working closely with Build-A-Bear to assess the situation and appreciate everyone’s patience and understanding."

The toys usually retail between £25 and £30 depending on style and extras - but mums with newborns could bag a toy today for just £1.

One unhappy mum who was told she couldn't join the queue in York due to the high demand said she was disappointed at being turned away.

Deborah Smyth, from Malton, said: "I just couldn't believe it - I didn't come this morning because I thought it would be too busy but now I wish I had."

Deborah, who had taken her month-old newborn tot Elsie to the shop, added: "I just thought it would be something good to do and save some money.

"But I've seen kids who should be in school with their mums queuing up to get a toy - I think it's wrong."

A Build-A-Bear spokesperson commented on Facebook: "The response to our Pay Your Age Day event at all of our UK locations has been overwhelming and unprecedented in our 21-year history.

"The crowds have greatly exceeded our expectations and, per local authorities, queues are at capacity and we cannot accept additional Guests due to extreme crowds and safety concerns.

"We understand our guests are disappointed, and we are working to address the situation.

"We will reach out directly to our valued guests as soon as possible."