HOMELESS people will be more at risk tonight as temperatures are expected to drop below freezing.

A nightshelter run by the Brighton and Hove City Council will be open, but many still sleep out in the chilling conditions.

SWEP (severe weather emergency protocol) shelter is based at Wagner Hall, Regency Road in central Brighton.

Outreach workers are in the city letting people know to go to Wagner Hall for shelter from 7pm.

If you are concerned about someone who is sleeping rough, contact Streetlink and the information will be shared with the outreach workers.

Here are some ways you can help people out in the streets during these cold winter nights:

  • If the person in question is under age or is sleeping rough with a child in their care, this is a matter to refer to the police immediately as local authorities have a legal obligation to provide shelter to children.
  • If the person is in need of urgent medical attention – for example, if they have an open wound or appear to be seriously ill – calling 999 for an ambulance will get them professional help quickly.
  • Another immediate concern, especially in cold conditions, is where the person is set to spend the next few hours.
  • Check if there are any night shelters open nearby that could offer a safe, warm sleeping areas.

One of the most important things to do when you are reporting a homeless person that might be at a serious risk in this weather is their night-time location.

Other details to report to homeless support charities or the council include:

• The name / nickname of the person

• If they're male or female

• Their approximate age

• A description

• Where and when you saw them

Homeless people often ask for spare change when they are out in the streets.

But there are other ways to support them in this cold weather if you can't spare the penny.

Donating to a homeless support charity will ensure the money is spent to help them.

Otherwise simply handing them a hot drink, a warm item of clothing or blanket or spending a moment talking to them can also help them get through the cold conditions.