This year, Haydon Wick Parish Council made the decision to donate to the Swindon Food Collective instead of sending corporate Christmas Cards.

Each year, the Council spends up to £200.00 on seasons greetings, however this year, funds were diverted to a greater cause.

Chairman of the Council, Councillor Vinay Manro said: “While we still want to send festive greetings to all of our contacts, we decided that a donation to the Swindon Food Collective would benefit members of our local community and we hope, make a real difference to someone’s Christmas”.

Over the last year the Swindon Food Collective has seen demand for their assistance increase in many areas with one zone particularly being the Haydon Wick and surrounding SN25 area.

Cher Smith, MBE, Manager of the Swindon Food Collective, said: "Swindon people and the companies based here have been really helpful during the Covid Pandemic.

"This generosity has doubled the amount of food that we have accepted to 118 tonnes and enabled us to re-distribute over 94 tonnes which equates to in excess of 74,000 meals to over 7,000 people of which over 34% are children.

"Many more people from varying locations are coming forward and we are more than happy to see them and share the donations with those in need. Swindon should be Loud and Proud about the fact that they are so successful at supporting their communities and people so well."

The Swindon Food Collective are now preparing to distribute their Christmas boxes and provide some special items within those boxes and they hope that anyone who may be struggling will seek to get a referral for a food box so that they do not have to go without over Christmas and New Year.

Anyone in need can ask for a referral. Referrals can be obtained via children's schools, health visitors and midwives, professional carer agencies, social workers, Nelson Trust, Salvation Army, Threshold, Turning Point, Probation, Citizens Advice or the SBC Emergency Fund or Livewell Hub and these can either be a in the form of a text referral from the agency of choice or a paper voucher which can be taken to any of the 8 distribution centres.