Lunch to tackle loneliness in Sutton Bridge, Long Sutton, Tydd St Mary and Gedney

The Rev David Oxtoby has a new plan to tackle loneliness. SG20016-102TW
The Rev David Oxtoby has a new plan to tackle loneliness. SG20016-102TW

People living on their own in a group of parishes around Sutton Bridge could see a friendly face at the door under a new plan to tackle loneliness.

The Rev David Oxtoby says the idea of door-to door deliveries of hot soup lunches, including a bread roll and dessert, was pioneered in his former parish in Stamford and now he wants to bring it to Sutton Bridge, Long Sutton, Gedney and Tydd St Mary.

He said: “What’s that got to do with isolation? It was never about the food - it was always about the human contact.”

Mr Oxtoby wants to reach out to people who never see anyone from one day to the next and is looking for residents to pledge their support, either by telling him they would welcome lunches at a small charge – or by agreeing to get involved in making or delivering the lunches.

He’s also keen to hear from food manufacturers in the area who might be able to support the plan.

Mr Oxtoby: “I had a local business approach me at the end of last year saying ‘we would like to support a charity in 2017’ so I wrote a proposal about this and I will hear from them at the end of this month whether I have been successful.”

If the scheme gets off the ground, he wants the soup lunches to be available to everyone who would like to receive them, young or old, and regardless of their income because it’s all about giving people an opportunity to chat to someone trustworthy.

Mr Oxtoby says all volunteers will be DBS checked.

He says people living alone are unlikely to talk to strangers at the door but, when it’s someone they can trust, they can have the chance of a chat before the person delivering the food goes on to the next call.

If you would like to receive a lunch, or would like to volunteer – perhaps even organise the whole scheme – please call Mr Oxtoby on 01406 258572.

• Do you have an idea for tackling loneliness? Email lynne.harrison@iliffepublishing.co.uk