A FOODBANK is launching an urgent appeal after demand soared during the coronavirus lockdown.

Malvern Hills Foodbank has been facing difficulties filling its shelves as demand has risen by 50 per cent. The biggest issue facing the foodbank is not lack of money, it is lack of goods for the shelves as supermarkets are clamping down on bulk-buying.

Chair of trustees Peter Buchanan said: "The people of our area have always been hugely responsive and generous. The donations of money and standing orders will ensure that we have a sustainable long term future for which we are truly grateful, but right now, we need food and essentials on the shelves.

"Supermarkets are unable to allow us to buy in bulk as they too have supply issues. Hopefully we will be able to continue providing and distribute balanced food boxes rapidly."

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The foodbank normally lists its shortages on its website and Facebook page, with donors responding accordingly and volunteers topping up as necessary using the cash that is donated, but the Foodbank says goods rather than cash would be particularly helpful at present.

Dot Hayes, publicity officer, said: "We are grateful to The Malvern Gazette for helping us to publicise the need for items listed on our shortages list, rather than cash right now. We hope to reach as many people as possible in order to explain our situation."

The trustees wish to stress that any form of help is always appreciated, and any items which make it easier for people to feed themselves, and look after their personal hygiene will always be welcome.

The collection points for donated items have had to be restricted due to Coronavirus, and a number of centres have been lost, particularly as churches are closed for now, but goods can be left at Waitrose, Morrisons, the Worcester Road Co-Op, Lyttleton Well, Upton Baptist Church, Upton Co-Op and the Food Bank Centre in Spring Lane South.