A Spalding chippy is frying up for the festive season by opening its doors to the homeless, hungry and lonely on Christmas Day.
Westlode Fisheries, in Westlode Street, will have free fish and chips, mince pies and drinks for two hours between 1pm and 3pm as a goodwill gesture to help people out who are facing a desperate December 25.
On a day when most people will be with their families, there will be homeless people around in Spalding who can’t afford a mealFardous Ali, Westlode Fisheries, Spalding
Owner Fardous Ali is making the gesture to mark her first year behind the counter at the chip shop which has a growing reputation for its home-made curries, samosas, spices and fishcakes.
Fardous said: “We just want to help the homeless by having an open time on Christmas Day when anyone can come in who is struggling for a meal and be given a hot meal, mince pie and a drink.
“On a day when most people will be with their families, there will be homeless people around in Spalding who can’t afford a meal.
“There are also some families who are struggling to pay for a Christmas meal and, as a catering business, we don’t want anyone to be left out.
“So families can come in on Christmas Day, take a meal for each other and family members back home to eat together.”
But Westlode Fisheries is going a step further for customers who want a takeaway meal on Christmas Eve and help a charity to be chosen by Fardous and her family at the same time.
The shop will be open between 3pm and 9pm on Sunday, December 24, with ten per cent of the day’s takings going to a good cause.
Fardous said: “Last year was our first Christmas and, at the time, I didn’t know Spalding well as my home is in Peterborough.
“But I’ve got to know the town over the last year and so I wanted to do something in Spalding for the first time.
“So we’re also opening on Christmas Eve from 3pm until 9pm and whatever we earn on that day, ten per cent of it will be given to a local charity.
“If people want to come and buy fish and chips to eat on December 24, they can know that some of their money will be going to a good cause.”
Fardous revealed that she had been involved in similar events in Peterborough where soup kitchens and community meals were organised.
She said: “No-one who is having a Christmas day meal with their families will want fish and chips.
“But this is the season to be charitable so we’re doing something for the homeless and vulnerable who’ll find life difficult this Christmas.”