Bromley is in the top ten local authorities in the UK where people suffer hunger, according to a new study.

The University of Sheffield study placed Bromley eighth, finding that 10 per cent were unable to eat because they could not afford it, or were unable to access food in the previous month.

This compares to data from the Food Foundation, in January 2021, which found 4.2 per cent of adults across the UK reported that during the previous month they had been hungry but unable to eat at least once.

A spokesperson for Bromley Borough Foodbank said: "Who would have thought that Bromley Borough would be in the top ten local authorities where people suffer from hunger?

"We need real acknowledgement of the problem so together, with collaborative working, we can compile a strategic plan to help turn this around.

"This is not about food support, it is about people not having enough money to live on, or having easy access to the vital information and support they need in their times of trouble.

"Please help us as we continue to campaign in healf of our Bromley residents and help be part of the change."

The new analysis of national data collected during the pandemic broke down experiences of food insecurity into three distinct groups.

Firstly, those who are hungry but were unable to eat food because they could not afford it, or were unable to access food in the previous month.

Secondly, those who are struggling to access food, including those who may have sought help within the last month with access to food, have cut back on meals and healthy foods to stretch tight budgets, or indicated that they struggled to access food in some way.

And thirdly, those who worry about food insecurity or being able to continue to supply adequate food for their household.

The research found that in one out of every six local authorities, rates of hunger were more than 150% (one-and-a-half times) the national average.

And in one in 10 local authorities, the rate was almost double.

Dr Megan Blake, from the University of Sheffield Institute for Sustainable Food, said: “This new map, for the first time, makes visible the patterns of food insecurity across the UK.

“While no-one should have to go hungry, struggle to get or worry about having enough food, in some places it is at proportions that are especially shocking, particularly as we are a wealthy country.

“If we are going to recover from Covid-19 we must address this problem.”

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