A Liverpool foodbank has reported a huge increase in demand with nearly a quarter of a million food parcels handed out last year.

The Knowsley Foodbank operates six food banks and 23 food clubs across Liverpool, the Wirral and into North Wales, receiving donations from the likes of Costco, M&S, Greggs and Amazon as well as from local businesses like Lock Stock Self-Storage who have just opened their first Liverpool site on the Chapel Brook Trade Estate in Huyton.

The amount the foodbank distributes has skyrocketed in the last year as the cost of living crisis hits the region hard.

The foodbank was visited by 14,000 people last year, according to Food Operations Lead Carolyn Vaughan who said: “We’ve seen a huge increase in the number of people coming to our foodbanks and joining our food clubs.”

“January is a difficult month for everyone, straight after Christmas, but we can help a lot. We’re just trying to get people the immediate support they need.”

“If someone phones me and says they’ve got no food we can make up a parcel and if there isn’t a foodbank open then we can take it to a pick-up point for them.

“We fed 240,000 in the last 12 months – that’s up from 140,000 the year before – and we are doing a lot with schools too.

“A lot of the people we help are in work because their wages just don’t cover their bills and there are people who aren’t well and are paying to get to hospital with the money they would have spent on food.”

Rob Jones, Lock Stock’s Area Manager, paid a visit to the Big help Project Depot and was amazed at the scale of the operation there. He said: “It’s incredible the amount of food they have here and as well as the tinned and dried food you expect they have fresh mince, whole chickens and even steak.”

“It shows the scale of the problem here and across the country and this is such a valuable service they provide.”

“We wanted to get involved because we have just opened in Huyton and our new site is proving very popular so it’s our way of saying thank-you to the people here and this is clearly a very much needed resource at a time when so many are struggling.”

Carolyn added: “We collect from Amazon every day except Christmas Day but the majority of the food and other goods including toiletries, is bought in now. We’re always grateful for donations though and for volunteers too.”