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Torridge and West Devon Liberal Democrats

Community rallies round to feed children

November 2, 2020 4:38 PM

Community rallies round to feed children

Slice of Life

Northam Mayor David Chalmers and Councillor Claire Hodson outside the Slice of Life café in Westward Ho! with owner Gill James

In the wake of the Government's refusal to extend the free school meals programme, local cafés and restaurants have rallied round to help families experiencing hardship during the half term holiday.

The Italian restaurant Belluno in Bideford was one of the first off the mark, rapidly joined by pubs and cafés from across the area.

The Mayor of Northam, David Chalmers, visited the Slice of Life café in Westward Ho! and the Market Street Kitchen and the Royal George in Appledore to thank them for their generosity, saying:

'It is wonderful to see how local businesses have responded to make sure that no child goes hungry, even when they themselves are struggling from the effects of the lockdown. I wanted to thank them personally for putting themselves out to fill a gap that should be the responsibility of the Government. Let's hope their generosity of spirit shames the Government into action.'

Councillor Claire Hodson, who accompanied Mayor Chalmers to congratulate Gill James and Craig Price, owners of the Slice of Life café in Westward Ho!, commented:

'It is heart-warming to see the community stepping in where there are children in need. Such generosity is incredible. Thank you to for helping to prevent our children from going hungry during half term."

Mayor Chalmers added:

'For some time now we have seen an increase in the number of local families turning to Food Banks for help during school holidays. This is not a new problem - successive Governments have refused to acknowledge that children need feeding just as much outside of term time - but Covid has made the situation much worse. And all credit to Marcus Rashford for bringing this shameful situation to the notice of the general public. We can only thank businesses likes the ones in Appledore and Westward Ho! that have stepped in where central Government has failed us.'

Market St Kitchen

Mayor Chalmers with Josie Gosbee outside the Market Street Kitchen in Appledore

Royal George

Garth and Sasha Hughes with Mayor Chalmers outside the Royal George