THE cost of the weekly food shop for Bury and Radcliffe residents will plummet for those struggling due to the financial impact of Covid-19, thanks to a new community grocery.

The Mill Community Grocery, which opened yesterday, March 16, will provide affordable food for members allowing them to do a large food shop for only £3 per visit - saving up to £40 a time.

Based at Kings Church, The Mill on Bury New Road, the community grocery will offer the same range of products available in local supermarkets, including fresh fruit and vegetables, tinned goods, baked items, frozen food, sanitary and household items.

The store will be open 9.30am to 4.30pm, Monday to Friday, and is all possible thanks to donations by local suppliers and supermarkets.

It is part of an initiative of national charity The Message Trust, and is being run in partnership with Kings Church Bolton.

Derek Smith, senior pastor at Kings Church, said: "We believe that this will massively help our community in these difficult times."

Membership costs just £5 per year and is reserved for local residents who are struggling with the financial impact of Covid-19.

Members are able to visit twice a week and choose their own shopping for their families - and will also have access to a range of services including employment clubs, debt advice, mental wellbeing courses, exploring Christianity and cookery courses.

Andy Hawthorne, founder of The Message Trust said: "Since the first lockdown we’ve seen how hard the impact of Covid-19 has been on people and their families - so many are now struggling to afford their weekly shop.

"We couldn’t stand by and do nothing. Community groceries are all about bridging the gap between supermarkets and foodbanks, making it easier for our members to put food on the table, while also providing them with support and courses too."

The store is just one of many community groceries with premises in Wigan and Salford having just opened, as well as across England.

The stock available in store will vary dependent upon donations, but members will usually be able to expect their £3 food shop to include: one sliced loaf of bread, five portions of fruit and vegetables, five boxed and canned items, two chilled items, two frozen items, two mix and match items, and one non-food item.

More information about The Mill Community Grocery opening can be found here.