The Telegraph & Argus Christmas Star Appeal is launched today as people are urged to nominate someone special so a tribute to them can be hung on the City Hall Christmas tree.

Hundreds of special stars will be hung on the tree to remember absent loved ones and those whose deeds have made a difference during the year.

Last year more than 230 golden Christmas Stars were hung from the tree and it is hoped many more will be featured this year before a ceremony is held at City Hall with the Lord Mayor of Bradford, Councillor Dale Smith, on Tuesday, December 4.

This year’s Christmas Star Appeal is the ninth. The closing date for applications is Friday, November 23.

This year the Lord Mayor’s Appeal is ‘Sprinkling Sunshine’ across the district by supporting numerous local charities and voluntary organisation working in the local community. This means he is making donations to lots of smaller charities rather than supporting one charity with a large donation at the end of his year and he would like to invite people to name a Star for someone who has Sprinkled Sunshine on their life.

Coun Smith said: “I shall be remembering my own mother and father because I am forever grateful for the start in life they gave me and the support to all the family.

“It is to remember those departed and think kindly of them and how sadly missed they are.

“My wife has chosen Nancy Walton as her star and the money raised from this will go to Sprinkle Sunshine all around organisations that help the vulnerable across the district.”

A list of all nominated Christmas Stars will be published in the T&A following the ceremony.

The Star Appeal was the brainchild of former Councillor, Irene Ellison-Wood.

Mrs Ellison-Wood attended Sue Ryder’s ‘Lights of Love’ at their Manorlands Hospice in Oxenhope and when she became Lord Mayor in 2004 she was keen to do something similar to Lights of Love in City Hall and her appeal volunteers came up with the idea of Christmas Stars named for people, to hang on the Christmas tree in City Hall’s banqueting suite.

This year a star will also be hung in memory of Arthur James, who died suddenly in early May just days after taking part in the Lord Mayor’s Charity Abseil something he had done for several years and had got his family involved in.

To pay tribute to a special person and to support the Lord Mayor's Appeal, you can nominate a person by filling in a coupon in today's T&A and sending a cheque or postal order for £5, made payable to The Lord Mayor’s Appeal, to: Christmas Star, Lord Mayor’s Appeal. City Hall, Bradford, BD1 1HY. Alternatively you can call (01274) 434965 from Monday to Friday from 9am to 4pm to pay by credit/debit card.

You will then be invited on December 4 for a tea or coffee and a mince pie with the Lord Mayor.