Hundreds of food parcels donated to feed children over half term in King's Lynn

Volunteers sorting through food donated by businesses and members of the public Credit: ITV Anglia

A community group in King's Lynn has received donations from dozens of businesses and individuals that will go towards feeding underprivileged children over half term.

Those who needed food were invited to collect parcels from the Discovery Community Centre on Sunday afternoon.

It follows a decision by the government not to extend the free school meals scheme over the half-term holidays, despite a campaign by England footballer Marcus Rashford.

Councillor Jo Rust, a member of King's Lynn Borough Council, was one of those who organised the collection in partnership with a local housing association.

She said: "In Norfolk there's over 10,000 children who don't even qualify for free school meals despite the fact they live in what we would call difficult circumstances.

"So we have no doubt that in King's Lynn and West Norfolk there is going to be a great need for them."

Those in need were invited to collect bags of food in King's Lynn on Sunday Credit: ITV Anglia

Businesses across East Anglia have come forward to offer help to families struggling to afford food over the half-term week.

Grill @ Twenty5 in Ipswich is among the pubs, restaurants and cafes offering help.

Tina Leamon, the restaurant's owner, said: "There was just something very wrong about us not being able to feed our children so we decided that as of Monday we will offer to any child of school age a free meal.

"How can we not feed our children? We're not a third-world country. This is so wrong on so many levels."

The government has come under increasing pressure to reverse their decision; in one of the latest moves a group of over 2,000 paediatricians signed a letter to the Prime Minister urging him to make a U-turn.