A VITAL foodbank service will close unless a manager is found for one of its west Cumbrian centres.

North Lakes Foodbank has launched an appeal to find a centre manager for the service it runs at Egremont’s Methodist church on Tuesdays and Fridays, which has supported 600 people in the last 12 months.

The charity has been operating without a centre manager for nearly a year and usage of the centre has increased by 60 per cent in the same period.

Adrian Cozens, project manager at North Lakes Foodbank, said: “There’s every opportunity of closure if we don’t find somebody. At the moment myself and Linda McDonald, who are part-time staff, have been filling the role, but the large time impact means it’s not sustainable for us to continue like this.

“If we were to close the Egremont centre, people would have to catch the bus to Whitehaven and pay that cost to come to the foodbank and that is something we want to avoid.”

He added the closure would deprive people of the help they desperately need.

Adrian said the centre manager would need to be available only for around six hours a week to carry out administrative tasks to make sure the foodbank is stocked for the two days it operates.

He said: “You get a lot out of it, you can make new friends and it’s a satisfying feeling doing something that has a big impact, you help people when they are at their lowest.”

The Egremont foodbank has been operating since February 2015 and a third of the people it supports are children.

It provides physical, mental and spiritual support to enable people to deal with the underlying causes of the immediate crisis and help them to avoid future problems.

Anyone interested in the role or in volunteering can call Adriana and Linda on 07502311452.