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Bury St Edmunds charity appeals for food and hygiene items to fill Christmas food parcels




A charity is appealing for festive-themed items and hygiene products to fill Christmas food parcels to support those in need.

Gatehouse, in Bury St Edmunds, is busy preparing parcels to help provide food during the Christmas week and expects to hand out between 500 to 600.

It is short on a number of food items as well as hygiene products.

Amanda Bloomfield, chief executive of Gatehouse. Picture by Mark Westley
Amanda Bloomfield, chief executive of Gatehouse. Picture by Mark Westley

Gatehouse is appealing specifically for:

  • Christmas puddings
  • Christmas chocolates
  • Cranberry sauce
  • Bread sauce
  • Stuffing
  • Hand sanitiser
  • Masks
  • Soap
  • Surface cleaner

Amanda Bloomfield, chief executive of Gatehouse, said: “We’ve wrapped and part made 450 parcels which are ordered in advance. Compared to previous years we’ve had a lot more ordered in advance. The social workers and organisations are expecting to have a greater case load that they need to cater for. The increase in orders is due to Covid-19.”

Alongside the Christmas parcels, Gatehouse continues to run its regular foodbank and still needs tinned and packaged food items but does not need any more pasta or cereal.

“The foodbank has seen a steady flow throughout this year,” Amanda said.“We’re expecting an increase after Christmas as we always have a peak in late December/January. Obviously the furlough scheme being continued until March has taken off the immediate need that we were expecting.”

Frederick Hiam, in Brandon, supplied boxes, Abbey Rotary provided 1,700 crackers and schools and businesses donated food.

Amanda added: “Every year it’s a challenge and a joy to make the parcels within the time span we have. This year there’s been the extra challenges of Covid but I’d like to thank the team who’ve come together to make this possible.”

Items can be taken to Gatehouse, in Dettingen Way, Monday to Friday, 9am-3pm.

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