A NEW community group has been set up providing free food parcels and fun for residents of Ilminster.

The friendship meetings have been started by staff from the town’s Tesco store, who are working together with the Lions Club of Ilminster and District.

Helena Jones, community champion at Ilminster Tesco, said: “Tesco has promised to have no food fit for human consumption be thrown away, so it goes to a charity or good cause.

“We already support the foodbanks and the foodshare but still have some left over, so we decided to come up with our own idea.

“Every Thursday we have got activities going on so we have had self-defence, strictly come jive, and bingo is the first week of the month.”

The meetings have also had the backing of Ilminster mayor Val Keitch.

She said: “There are a lot of people in Ilminster who would really benefit from something like this.

“I spoke to one lady who really likes using the foodshare, and it is a really good scheme. You don’t have to fill in any forms and you get a box of food each.”

The meetings are held at the Ile Youth and Community Centre in Ilminster from 11am until 1pm every Thursday.