A KEIGHLEY social housing group has given a massive boost to two foodbanks this Christmas.

Staff and board members at Incommunities collected nearly 1,000 items.

The haul of goods has been split between the Bradford Metropolitan and Central foodbanks.

Geraldine Howley, Incommunities’ group chief executive, said the bumper donation was in addition to other foodbank contributions made by the company during the past 12 months.

“Every year staff and board members pull out all the stops to give so generously to support local families and individuals in real hardship,” she added.

“I would like to thank everyone who has made donations.”

Helen Lynskey – secretary of the Bradford Metropolitan foodbank, which works across the district – said the charity was hugely grateful for the support.

She added: “We are handing out more than 1,400 parcels a month and our figures are rising.

“Christmas is going to be hard to cope with for many and New Year is always worse, as people have spent up and the bills start to come in again.

“We really rely on the support of local businesses and the community to help fill our food parcels and contributions like this will be a big help at a time when the demand is at its highest.”

Tribute was also paid by Josie Barlow, manager of Bradford Central Foodbank – part of the Trussell Trust network.

“No one should need a foodbank but the reality is for growing numbers of local people they are a lifeline,” she added.

“We’ve just had our busiest-ever month, providing food for 577 people.

“A big thank-you goes to Incommunities – its generous contributions will make a big difference.”

Incommunities is also making a £1,000 Christmas donation to the national mental health charity, MIND.

* The housing group has retained its top rating following an assessment by the Regulator of Social Housing.

The Government body is responsible for regulating registered social housing providers with more than 1,000 homes.

Mrs Howley said: “I am proud that we have again achieved this top rating. The judgement is testament to the hard work and focus of our board members, senior management and staff.”