LOCAL businesses are offering free meals for children in and around York as the community rallies round its most needy families.

Already, within hours of the first takeways announcing that they were joining the national wave of support for youngsters, many families have taken up the offer, with many more expected to join them.

Among places offering free food over the half term in the York area are fish and chippies, cafes, corporate caterers and takeaways.

Suppliers too are joining in with Dales The Chef's Choice of Malton and Millers Food Service of York donating food to Thompsons Fish and Chips on the A64 north of York 

"No kid should go hungry," said Jo Thompson of the chippie.  

Her business is offering free takeaways for all children regardless of whether or not they receive vouchers for free meals during school time.

It will be drawing on paid supplies as well as the donated food to feed children. 

On the other side of York, Barton's Fish and Chips on Boroughbridge Road, Acomb, is offering free children's meals between 4pm and 6pm throughout half term.

In the centre of York, Drake's Fisheries in Low Petergate is offering free kids meals with every main meal purchased whether for takeaway or eat in.  Parents need to say "school" to qualify. 

EborCibus pizzas on Tanner Row will be opening extra hours to help children and is planning a massive baking of 20" pizzas so it can offer New York slices of pizza, fries and a soft drink for children who get free school meals.

As well as its scheduled openings on Thursday to Sunday, it will be opening on Monday and Tuesday mornings and early afternoons to hand out free bake at home vacuum packed pizzas for York parents struggling to make ends meet.

"It's only a small gesture," the pizzeria's Facebook page says.

Thai Season by Pritsana in Pocklington and York is offering each child one free meal a day over half term.

Kelly's Food for You of Huntington is looking for a family who are struggling so much their children will starve over half term so she can provide them with a free cooked square meal each day from Monday to Friday.

Since lockdown began owner Kelly Watkinson has changed her firm from corporate catering to providing for the elderly and vulnerable. She wants any organisation dealing with the needy who knows such a family to contact her.

"I want to do something to help," she said.

Baileys Cafe and Tearooms on Museum Street is offering a free ice cream with every child's meal during half term.

Two restaurants that are part of chains are offering 100 free takeaway meals a day from Monday to Friday at their York branches.

The Old House on Petergate, part of the Solita chain, is open for collections between 3pm and 6pm.   

Estabulo Rodizio at the Vangarde shopping centre is opening for takeaways from 4pm to 5pm from its reception  area.

On its Facebook page it says: "Please don’t feel embarrassed to take these meals. We want to make sure they are going to be used. Please feel free to come in and take what you need, no questions asked. 
Any meals not used will be donated to local charities to ensure that those who need our help most receive it."

If you are offering free meals for children over half term let us know by contacting newsdesk@nqyne.co.uk and we will let everyone know.