High Peak MP Ruth George calls for foodbank funding to be extended

High Peak MP Ruth George has written to the lotteries minister to ask why the Big Lottery has stopped funding foodbanks.

It comes after High Peak Foodbank was told by the Big Lottery that its lottery funding was ending.

Speaking in the House of Commons last week Ruth told the lotteries Minister, Mims Davies MP: “Food banks are like the fourth emergency service, especially in rural areas such as mine. High Peak Foodbank has helped over 1,000 people this year, but it is no longer funded by the lottery.”

Ruth went on to ask the Minister what assessment had been made of the impact of the lottery’s decision on the vulnerable people who need them, as well as on the foodbanks themselves.

The lotteries Minister, Mims Davies MP, said she was not aware that funded foodbanks were no longer funded and agreed to raise the issue with the national lottery.

Ruth said: “I was very surprised that the Minister was not aware of the Lottery’s decision to cease funding for food banks. All the evidence suggests that, with another year of frozen benefits, poverty will get worse and that foodbanks will be needed even more people.”

In her letter to the minister, Ruth wrote: “Over the five years of funding, The Zink Project based at the foodbank has increased services to include Zink Employability, Zink Advice and Buxton Community Café.

“When the food bank came to reapply for a grant this year they got turned down on the basis that lottery funding is no longer available to food banks.

“This means that High Peak Foodbank will lose around 75% of its funding, leaving them with just £16,000 a year to fund their service which is relied upon by over 1,200 families every year.

“The cuts to their funding will mean that staff will need to be cut which will strain the already stretched service.

“Please would you investigate whether the Lottery have stopped funding foodbanks and if so what other funding is available for food banks, who provide a vital service for very vulnerable people?”