THERE has been a 30 per cent increase in people needing food from Bridgwater Foodbank during the past year.

According to the latest figures released by the Trussell Trust, Sedgemoor has given out 9,162 packages between April 2020 and March 2021.

And 3,165 of these went to children.

Whereas between April 2019 and March 2020, 7,790 parcels were delivered in total, with 2,921 going to children.

Phil Jarman, manager at Bridgwater foodbank, said: "This last year the Bridgwater Food Bank has seen an increase of 30 per cent.

"It has now plateaued, but with the end of furlough and the possibility of more job losses we could well see an increase going forward.

"We have been supported by the local community and local businesses throughout the past year, which has enabled us to help feed those individuals and families who are in crisis."

Bridgwater Foodbank is part of the Trussel Trust network, which reports levels of need over the last year.

More than 2.5million emergency food parcels were given to people struggling to afford essentials between April 2020 and March 2021.

And more than 980,000 of these parcels went to children.

“No one should face the indignity of needing emergency food,” said Emma Revie, chief executive of the Trussell Trust.

“Yet our network of food banks has given out record numbers of food parcels as more and more people struggle without enough money for the essentials.

“This is not right but we know we can build a better future.

“This pandemic has shown the unexpected can hit suddenly, but we know when we push for change, the government has to listen and act. We are asking you, the public, to write to your local election candidates for a commitment to working to end the need for food banks.”