A CAFÉ that opened last year has been helping a town through the coronavirus lockdown with their food parcels.

The Bait Room opened in September 2019 by Emma Jordan who is born and bred Willington and is well known in the town.

Mrs Jordan and her husband had never run a business before, but had seen some success in the early months.

However, that was put at risk when Covid-19 and the lockdown struck.

She said: “You’ve got to keep going and make the best of a bad situation. I wanted to do my bit for the town. Since March we have been helping those who are struggling.”

They had so many requests it got to the point where the business could not cope with the demand, their initial target started with five days of delivery but numbers built up and it was too much to handle on a near loss.

The business changed to putting people on a rota list for two weeks so they could get meals.

After two weeks another group of people would be put on the list. They managed to get the amount of meals down to a more manageable 20 a day, packaged up and delivered to the doorstep.

With the town council and the AAP, the Bait Room is working to distribute the meals.

The town council will also give some of the money it has received toward the continuing Covid support.

Mrs Jordan added: “I still have my normal customers who have been with me from day one.

“This week we are able to offer meals to a wider area thanks to the town council. Its not a three-course meal but its something and there is a good choice.

“My family is from Willington and its me giving back to the town. Seeing a smile on someone’s face makes my day. The response has been overwhelming, we have had flowers and chocolates sent to us, its been lovely.

“I would also like to thank the girls who work for me, it take a lot to volunteer the hours that they do, they never grumble and they get on with it.

“They never know what might happen when delivery the food, so they are putting themselves at risk to help the community.”

Takeaways can also be collected in person, with social distancing in place.

Durham County Councillor Fraser Tinsley said: “I know Emma has been working under the radar to help people since this crisis started. She is now helping the Town Council preparing our hot meals for vulnerable adults.

“We have over 50 going out this week. People like Emma are the backbone of our community.”