Urgent plea for help from Batley Food Bank which is so busy, it has run out of stock

Audrey Ashton, Philip Hoyle, Charlotte Hardy and Tom Hardy from Batley Food Bank.
Audrey Ashton, Philip Hoyle, Charlotte Hardy and Tom Hardy from Batley Food Bank.

Demand for help from a food bank in Batley is so high, it has run out of supplies.

Batley Food Bank, on Brunswick Street, collects food from the public and redistributes it to families in need, aiming to provide enough food for the whole family for three meals a day for a week.

But despite supermarket collections and generous donations from local groups, businesses and residents, the team at the food bank say their cupboards are bare.

“It’s just not enough. We’re so busy,” said one of the team leaders, Audrey Ashton.

“Last Friday we had 52 people in one day.

“We’re averaging between 40 and 50 people every time we’re open. The other day we had a family of eight in.

“People have no money.”

She said the need has been increasing for months but the team have seen a steep rise since the start of the school holidays.

“People can’t afford to feed their children,” she said.

“Young people are leaving school and there are no jobs.

“They’re going into hostels and they try to make their money last but by the end of the month they run out.”

Martin Naylor, of Batley Parish Church, said his congregation will be asking for donations to the food bank as part of its Harvest Festival celebrations.

“It’s worrying both that there has been an increase in need and that donations are not what they could be,” he said.

As well as food, the bank supplies people with toiletries and cleaning products.

Donations can be dropped off at the food bank 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 around the area. More information about these and the work the food bank does can be found at www.batleyfoodbank.org.uk.