A DESPERATE need for help in Harwich has seen struggling families without any bedding and schoolchildren with holes in their shoes.

Diane Boyd, who runs the Community Builder scheme at the Tendring Citizens Advice Bureau, said the scale of need in the town has been a surprise.

Last week it was revealed there had been a 60per cent rise in those seeking help from the Harwich foodbank.

Diane, who has been running the Winter Warmer scheme in the town, which provides free clothes and bedding to those in need, said: "We've far exceeded the 1000 items we handed out when it was held in Clacton.

"We've had families with children that have holes in their shoes.

"It's very concerning."

To contact the Citizens Advice Bureau in Harwich call 01255 377080.

To donate to the Harwich foodbank drop off items at the Salvation Army charity shop in George Street in Harwich.