A VOLUNTEER-LED service that has been keeping Winsfordians fed in the pandemic is now available in Middlewich.

The Hive, a charitable community benefit society led by Winsford town councillor Damon Horrill, teamed up with the Weaver Valley Co-operative in April to launch What's For Tea.

And from Sunday, May 31, the service is available in Middlewich too thanks to Middlewich and District Foodbank and Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service, who are helping the service to grow and deliver across the town.

For £25 a week, self-isolating residents – including those who are elderly or particularly vulnerable to the coronavirus – can get a two-course daily meal and a grocery box including bread, milk, fruit, soap and toilet rolls.

Alternatively, one-off meals can be delivered for £3.99, Saturday picnic boxes for £4.99, and Sunday lunches for £5.99.

"If we can put a smile on someone’s face just by breaking the week up with fresh food deliveries then why wouldn’t we?" said Tom Aston, a chef at the Red Lion who is volunteering with Weaver Valley Co-operative.

"I’m over the moon how people are reacting to What’s for Tea, it makes me feel proud knowing we are helping people in our local community."

The meals are cooked fresh by volunteers and cooled down safely, and the team also caters for vegans.

Volunteers then deliver the chilled meals, which can be heated up to eat on the same day or frozen for a later date.

Although it is priced to break even, any additional funds brought in by What's For Tea will be donated to St Luke's Hospice.

"We wanted to find a way to help aid the local community and those that most needed assistance during these unusual times," said Alice Johnson, a host and baker at the Red Lion who is volunteering with Weaver Valley Co-operative.

"Our staff have been exceptional with wanting to help and volunteer their time, we are all healthy and able-bodied so what better way than to start a delivery service."

The Weaver Valley Co-operative runs the Red Lion and the Gate Inn pubs, in Winsford, as well as the King's Lock, in Middlewich.

What's For Tea comes at a time those venues have been hit by the lockdown, with workers who are currently furloughed now taking the time to cook, bake, organise and make deliveries in the voluntary scheme.

Cllr Horrill added: "In times of greatest need and solidarity it is no surprise that communities come together in this way, the many initiatives and efforts springing up across the country in recent weeks are testimony to the power and resilience of voluntary self help and cooperation.

"What's For Tea is testimony to what can be achieved when locally rooted co-operatives with shared values and common goals work together to solve problems."

To find out more or place an order for yourself or a self-isolating relative in the Winsford and Middlewich area, visit whatsfortea.net, email admin@thehivelive.org or call 07771 985129.