Food bank in Skegness bracing itself for busy winter

A food bank in Skegness is bracing itself for its busiest winter yet, with volunteers already seeing a rise in demand for their services.

Storehouse food bank manager Steve Harris and volunteer Sue Hinkling.

Many families facing the end of seasonal work have the added pressure this year of losing the Universal Credit uplift and furlough scheme and rising energy bills - which is expected to push more people over the poverty line.

"This week alone we have done 86 emergency food parcels, which is a lot," said the Storehouse Food Bank manager Steve Harris.

"We are expecting it to get worse with the end of seasonal work and families having the added pressure this year of losing the Universal Credit uplift and furlough scheme, as well as rising energy bills.

"It was busy last Christmas but we are expecting it to be much worse this year."

Fortunately, the larder is brimming with produce at the moment following Harvest Festival donations.

"We have had donations from schools - including Skegness Infants and Juniors - and local churches, such as Skegness Methodist Church, Burgh le Marsh Baptist Church and St Leonards Church, so fortunately we have plenty at the moment to meet the demand," said Steve.

Volunteer Sue Hinkling added: "Just after Christmas is the worst time for donations. It always seems to go quiet then.

"However, the people of Skegness are very generous. We even have pensioners walking from town to bring us tins of food."

The Food Bank is run from The Storehouse Church on North Parade, providing three days emergency food for local people in financial hardship.

It is supported entirely by volunteers and donations from local churches, businesses and individuals.

Anyone wishing to donate food or toiletries to the larder should take it to the Storehouse or volunteers can organise a collection point to be set up at a business or venue. Recent items they have been short of include toilet rolls and toothpaste, shower gel and shampoo, tinned meats and pasta sauce.

For more details contact the Food Bank on 01754 763362.