A big-hearted business is to deliver free Christmas dinners to elderly, vulnerable and lonely residents in Ottery St Mary tomorrow (December 25).
Otter Garden Centre has come up with the scheme after the town’s famous annual festive meal could not take place because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
MD Jacqui Taylor and her team of willing helpers want to make sure no-one in the community will go hungry on the big day.
They are offering to provide a roast turkey dinner complete with a Christmas cracker and mince pie to the elderly, infirm, isolated or anyone in need – at no cost.
The meal will be freshly cooked and delivered at lunchtime on December 25.
Jacqui said: “It’s been such a hard year for everyone, but especially so for older people and those who have had to shield – there has been so much isolation and loneliness.
“Many don’t have family to care for them, whilst for others their family members live a long distance away or in a higher tier, so they are not able to visit this Christmas.
“We really do believe Christmas is a time for giving and for showing that we care.
“With this small gesture we hope that the most vulnerable and lonely in our community will know that we are thinking of them.”
The meals, which will be freshly prepared by the restaurant team in the garden centre kitchens, will include roast turkey and all the trimmings.
Jacqui, family members and a team of volunteers will be putting off their own celebrations until later on Christmas Day to make the deliveries and ensure the food arrives piping hot and on time.
Family, friends and neighbours have been encouraged to nominate anyone they think should be included.
Former mayor Glyn Dobson and the Ottery Help Scheme have been putting a list together.
Mr Dobson said he has received requests from family members living hundreds of miles for their elderly parents to receive a meal.