Unwrap a fantastic feast for Christmas – and help an important local charity

Unwrap a fantastic feast for Christmas - and help an important local charity

Eileen Leahy finds out more about the charitable collaboration between them and how you can be part of it over the festive season…

Macknade is without doubt one of the county’s leading food and drink experts. But up until September this year you would have had to make the journey across Kent to one of its stores in Ashford and Faversham if you wanted a taste of their epicurean offerings.

Thankfully though they opened a third store and dining area here in Tunbridge Wells on the top floor of Hoopers at the end of the summer and since its launch it has proved to be very popular with local foodie fans.

Now the family-owned company, which dates back 170 years and has its roots both here in the UK and Italy, has announced it will be partnering with Porchlight to help further its mission to develop and serve the local Kent community.

Last week the specialist food and drink business announced it would be working with the charity which helps the homeless and vulnerable – and has a presence in Tunbridge Wells – all over the Christmas period until January 1 2022.

They will donate £5 for every order purchased through their online Christmas shop during this time and the monies will be transferred to the charity at regular intervals throughout the campaign.

Macknade Managing Director, Shane Godwin explained: “Together we can spread a little hope this Christmas. Being at the heart of our Kent communities, we want to give back to those in need at this time of year. Porchlight do fantastic work, reaching out to people experiencing, or at risk of homelessness and I’m confident that our amazing customers will join with us to support this important initiative.

“This Christmas will see more people than ever in danger of becoming homeless. Factors such as the rising cost of living, coupled with the end of protections that were put in place when Covid first hit, mean that more people are now at risk. We want to do our part to alleviate some of the challenges that will be faced by proportions of our local community.”

Shane added that, in what could become a very real crisis, Porchlight has already seen a 63% increase in referrals during the first seven months of this year and is bracing itself for a further rise in the number of people requiring help by the end of the year.

Kate Boulding, Corporate Partnerships Manager at Porchlight, told us: “We expect more people than ever will need our help this winter. More than 9,300 households in Kent could be facing homelessness by the end of the year because protections allowing them to keep a roof over their heads – such as the furlough scheme and the eviction ban – have now ended.

“The amazing support we’re receiving from Macknade means we can continue to be there for the most vulnerable people in our communities. We want to say a massive thank you to them for choosing to support us and raising awareness of our work to their customers this festive season.”

Macknade’s online and also instore Christmas Shop is fully stocked with myriad seasonal products including all the essential ingredients to create the perfect festive feast such as slow grown, free-range turkeys, fresh produce, and store cupboard staples. There are also bountiful hampers, perfect for gifting plus a curated selection of hand-crafted wreaths and garlands for the home. In other words all you need for a fabulous Christmas but at the same time if you shop with them you will know you’re also doing your bit for a very worthwhile charity too.

Shane Godwin exclusively told the Times: “At Macknade we believe in the power of food and drink to create, maintain, and enrich communities. Our ethos really resonates at this time of year, a time that can be incredibly tough for those who are vulnerable or already experiencing homelessness.

“The donations we are making to Porchlight will not only help the charity reach out to those in need but can also contribute towards the cost of a Christmas lunch for someone living in a Porchlight property or fund an essential check in, helping to keep someone in the Kent community off the streets.”

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