Charity boss Dorothy McGregor has thanked the community as the Observer’s food parcel appeal picks up pace.

A number of businesses have now set up boxes to help Maundy Relief collect food parcels for families struggling to put food on the table.

Traders stepped in to help after the Observer launched a campaign to help Maundy Relief restock its food bank.

It comes as the charity revealed that it has handed out more than 700 food parcels since the start of the year, with more and more middle class families coming forward for help.

Greengates Builders Merchants, based in Accrington, is the latest company in the process of setting up a box at its  headquarters on Whalley Road. Boss Steven Pickup said he hopes his customers and passers-by will donate generously.

He said: “My wife Brenda saw the poverty report in the Observer.

“We both wanted to help instantly. Our base is a central point in Accrington so there might be a chance the box will get filled up with food.

“With the Observer poster next to the box, we've got our fingers crossed that it will go well.”

Miss McGregor said staff and people at Maundy have been overwhelmed by how people have helped.

But she hopes more businesses will come to their aid.

She added: “We are really appreciative to the Observer for highlighting our issues and to the people in the community who are helping. We needed the help as we've given out more than 700 food parcels already this year to those who need it.

“At the moment we are getting lots of deliveries of food from the public, particularly elderly people.It is wonderful because it is really keeping our heads above water.

“We still need food to come in though as it is going out as fast as it is coming in.” She added: “I have written to all the places who have offered to be food points. We are very grateful.”

All Fruits stall at Accrington Market was the first to sign up to the appeal and was quickly followed by fellow stalls Slacks Butchers, M&IK Smith butchers and Fairbrothers biscuits. But we still need more businesses to come forward.

Posters to help businesses advertise them can be picked up from our office in the Market Hall. The Observer agreed to publish the names and locations of the businesses
that have agreed to house collection boxes points.

If your business would like to house a collection box, contact the newsroom on 0161 211 2977 or email: .