A TEAM of volunteers who delivered “meals on wheels” to vulnerable people during the first coronavirus lockdown are to be recognised as “Covid heroes”.

The team from the Bevy, a community-owned pub in Moulsecoomb, are among those due to be honoured by the mayor of Brighton and Hove at a council meeting today.

They leapt into action when vulnerable customers who had been attending the pub’s lunch club and dementia café were forced to stay at home as a result of the pandemic restrictions.

As well as supporting their elderly regulars with a hot meal three times a week, the team also linked with charities and community organisations to find others in need of warming food.

The Argus: The pub's community manager Helen Jones praised volunteersThe pub's community manager Helen Jones praised volunteers

The Bevy’s community manager Helen Jones praised the “small army” of more than 40 volunteers who helped prepare the meals and deliver them to people in the community.

She said: “It was a bit of a challenge setting it up at first – but, overall, it hasn’t felt hard because of all the support.

“Also, we were in the fortunate position to be meaningfully occupied during the pandemic when lots of people were isolated or restricted from leaving their homes.

“We have had a purpose – and certainly through the height of the pandemic local people were glad of something meaningful to do in terms of coming to work in the kitchen or delivering meals.”

The Bevy’s committee secretary Chris Llewellyn publicised Bevy Meals on Wheels, known as BMW, on social media to help raise money and awareness of the project.

The community team partnered with FareShare to keep costs down and provide quality food.

Ms Jones said: “The hardest thing was knowing people were suffering, which we found out about over the phone or when delivering.

“But again we were in a fortunate position to sometimes alleviate problems or at least flag them up to appropriate people or services.

“Because of our partnership with FareShare, we’ve never had to worry about having enough food.”

Last year all individuals and organisations who helped others during the pandemic were honoured with the freedom of the city.

The team also received recognition when they won the NACC Meals on Wheels Award and a virtual visit from the Duchess of Cornwall.

The mayor, Councillor Alan Robins, is expected to honour the “covid heroes” at a Brighton and Hove City Council “public engagement and members’ meeting” tomorrow.

The virtual meeting is due to start at 4.30pm and is scheduled to be webcast on the council’s website.