SOME of the most disadvantaged families in Harwich sat down to a special meal on Christmas day thanks to a charitable donation.

The Harwich Haven Authority will be providing hampers, valued at £1,000, to ensure around 20 of the community’s most impoverished families do not go hungry this Christmas.

The hampers will contain everything required for a slap-up Christmas meal, including vegetables, turkey, stuffing, chocolates, sweets and a Christmas dessert.

Essentials such as nappies, toothpaste and fuel cards will also be provided.

The initiative is a collaboration between Harwich Haven Authority and Harwich and District Foodbank, which works tirelessly to support local families in the Harwich and Dovercourt area.

The foodbank is based next to Morrisons, in Iconfield Park, Garland Road, Parkeston.

Les Nicoll, foodbank chairman, said: “I am extremely pleased and excited about this generous offer from Harwich Haven Authority.

“Their kind donation to Harwich and the wider community will definitely make a huge difference.

“As I sit down with my family for Christmas dinner it will be fantastic to know that because of this generous and unselfish offer other families in our town will be able to enjoy the celebrations without worrying.

“The Harwich foodbank will also match the fuel card offer to ensure families remain warm throughout the entire holiday period.”

Neil Glemdinning, chief executive of Harwich Haven Authority, said: “As a Trust Port it’s important for us to invest in our local community.

"We’re also one of the largest employers in Harwich so we were very keen to get involved with the Christmas hamper initiative.

“It’s a special time of year and my staff were eager to lend support. We’re also collecting unwanted, good quality winter clothes, bedding and footwear that we’ll distribute to the community.”