AN Ellesmere Port community project which helps feed hundreds of vulnerable people every week has confirmed it is not setting up base in the town's old Iceland supermarket.

Rumours had been circulating recently that The Port Grocery, a not-for-profit community interest company, had moved into the vacant retail unit on Marina Drive.

However, the membership-based community shop has confirmed to The Standard that this is not the case and they are in fact temporarily using the building as a storage facility during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Port Grocery, which diverts perfectly good food away from landfill to provide high-quality affordable options for the local community, regularly welcomed hundreds of people a week to their Trinity Church base prior to the lockdown.

Rather than close, they recruited an army of volunteer drivers and have delivered scores of emergency food boxes direct to people's homes.

Founder Rita Lewis said: "We are not moving to Iceland. We are using it as temporary storage whilst in the midst of this terrible virus.

"We had to turn our model on a sixpence the day after lockdown and we went from everyone coming to collect their shopping to having to make home deliveries.

"After a shout out on Facebook we had 47 volunteer drivers step up to carry out the home deliveries. We have been delivering 170 food boxes five days a week for the last 12 weeks.

"We've been working seven days a week to bring in sufficient food supplies. That's why we've needed the extra storage space."

She added: "We've had referrals from GPs, housing associations, child services, wellbeing co-ordinators, CWAC help scheme, to name just a few.

"The community spirit and commitment to serve others has been off the scale."