Town rallies round to help Batley Food Bank

Audrey Ashton, one of the team leaders at Batley Food Bank.
Audrey Ashton, one of the team leaders at Batley Food Bank.

Donations have been flooding in for Batley Food Bank since an urgent appeal to restock its shelves last week.

Volunteers at the bank, on Brunswick Street, say they have been overwhelmed by the amazing response from generous local people and beyond.

Audrey Ashton, one of the team’s leaders, said: “We’ve had a really fantastic response from people. It’s been second to none.”

In just one day, the volunteers collected more than 20 crates of food donated from shoppers at Asda in Dewsbury.

A host of organisations have also rallied round, including Huddersfield Town Football Club, Batley Grammar School, Dewsbury Soroptimists and the Baab-ul-Ilm Islamic centre in Leeds.

MP for Batley and Spen Tracy Brabin, who highlighted the food bank’s plea, said she was delighted that people were helping.

She tweeted: “I’m really happy to see this and thank you everyone for your kindness and generosity.”

The Batley News reported last week how demand for help from the food bank had become so high, it had run out of supplies.

Supermarket collections and donations from residents and businesses had not been enough to keep up, and the bank had found that its cupboards were bare.

Mrs Ashton thanked everyone who had helped refill the bank’s shelves and urged people to keep donating.

The food bank collects food, toiletries and cleaning supplies and redistributes them to families in need.

It aims to provide enough for a family to have three meals a day for a week.

Mrs Ashton said they see between 40 and 50 people at each session, and that number is rising.

Donations can be dropped off at the food bank when it is open on Mondays and Tuesdays between 1pm and 3pm, Wednesdays between noon and 2pm, Thursdays between 6pm and 7.30pm and Fridays between 1pm and 3pm.

There are also drop-off points including Batley Library, Batley Town Hall, Birstall Town Hall, Cleckheaton Town Hall and Lloyds bank in Batley or Cleckheaton.