MORE than 2,000 children in York will now have access to free school meals over the summer holidays - following a campaign by footballer Marcus Rashford.

The Manchester United forward, 22, welcomed the news that children will receive six weeks worth of food vouchers over summer, after writing an emotional open letter to MPs drawing on his own experience of relying on free school meals and food banks growing up.

The news comes after the government announced a U-turn on its policy, and said that it all children eligible for free school meals in term time in England will benefit from the "Covid summer food fund". 

York Central MP, Rachael Maskell, welcome the new, adding: “Every child should be able to access a hot, nutritious meal every day. With 2317 children in York currently receiving free school meals and the claimant count rocketing by 2,140 people since the lockdown begun, it is clear that the city is having to support new levels of poverty. I believe there must now be provision made for all families struggling at this time, and children in our city must be fed.

“The pressure that Labour MPs have brought has forced a Government u-turn, so children will now be supported over the summer. Holiday hunger is a very real challenge for many families in York. I thank York’s food bank, the supper collective and all community-led schemes for all they are doing over this challenging time and for people across York for their generous contributions to the food bank, however, York still needs a food strategy to combat food poverty for all.”