Coronavirus: Bristol homeless food service begins

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Sandwiches being madeImage source, PA Media
Image caption,
The project aims to feed up to 600 homeless people per day

A free food delivery service for homeless people has started in Bristol.

Cheers Drive, named after the city's customary greeting to bus drivers, will provide restaurant-quality food to people isolating in shelters because of the coronavirus outbreak.

The scheme aims to replace traditional food drop-off schemes in Bristol which have temporarily stopped, after many people who ran them began to isolate.

Chefs involved include Josh Eggleton of the Michelin-starred Pony and Trap.

He is working with other restaurateurs including Shona Graham from Emmeline and the Hatch at Spike Island, and Dominic Borel from Pasta Loco.

Cheers Drive will feed rough sleepers in hotel rooms and hostels, as well as homeless families in temporary accommodation.

The food is dropped off outside their door, without human contact, to minimise risk.

All of the kitchens are spaced out, with staff wearing personal protective equipment equipment donated by a local tattoo parlour.

Image source, PA Media
Image caption,
Josh Eggleton will be working to provide a breakfast, a packed lunch and a hot meal every day for those in need

Mr Eggleton said: "Coronavirus has caused a massive shock to the hospitality industry.

"Hospitality is all about feeding and serving people, and we're going to work together, to support each other and as many people as possible."

Cheers Drive is run by the charity Caring in Bristol.

Its director Ben Richardson said: "Traditional food projects for those experiencing homelessness rely on large public gatherings, soup-kitchen style handouts and unfortunately, they are no longer safe.

"It's important that we can rise to challenges and meet the most immediate needs of those that are vulnerable during times of change, we will be there for everyone."

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