A COACHING inn and dining room in Sedbergh has made almost 200 meals for key workers in Kendal.

Staff at the Black Bull were inspired by the dedication of local NHS and care home staff, and wanted to be able to do their bit to keep workers going.

So they have decided to dedicate their time to preparing healthy, wholesome meals for frontline carers.

“Providing a warm meal is a relatively small thing but it means that these amazing people won’t have to worry about preparing or cooking food for themselves at the end of a long and exhausting day in the frontline, and can get the rest they need, so that they can continue to carry out their vital work on our behalves,” said a spokesperson for the Black Bull.

Owner James Ratcliffe and head chef Nina Matsunaga set about fundraising to buy additional ingredients to use alongside those from their own larder at the Black Bull.

They established a GoFundMe page on April 22 and within two days it had raised over £1,000.

They also received donations of fresh produce from industry suppliers, including Hodgson’s Fish and Caterite Food Service.

Nina and James ensured their kitchen production line fully complied with social distancing guidelines, before volunteer members of the kitchen team started making meals that weekend.

They produced over 90 dishes including fish pie, beef pie and vegetable chilli.This first batch was delivered by James on May 4 to the care teams at Westmorland General Hospital and Westmorland Care Home.

This was followed by a second delivery of over 100 meals on May 11.

As well as making meals for key workers, the kitchen team are also maintaining the Black Bull’s existing bread baking project. This involves making fresh bread several days a week, donating it to a local retailer, who then sells the bread and donates the proceeds to several local charities.

The entire team at the Black Bull would like to thank everyone who has donated.