SOLDIERS gave up their day to cook a meal for the homeless – using tonnes of food they donated to charity.
Servicemen and women from 12 Regiment Royal Artillery, based at Thorney Island near Emsworth, ordered some scrumptious rations for an event they had planned.
But the recent bad weather caused the function to be cancelled, leaving the soldiers with lots of surplus meat, vegetables, herbs, and spices.
So instead of letting it go to waste, they gave the food away to the Rethink Mental Illness Central Point homeless day centre in North End.
And some of the regiment’s chefs even gave up a day to go and cook a top-notch meal for them yesterday.
Corporal Melissa Harper, 27, said: ‘We had an event planned but it got cancelled because of the rain. We had all this food left that would have gone to waste otherwise so we decided to give it to a good cause.
‘It was interesting being able to come into the centre and cook for the people here, and they couldn’t thank us enough which was nice.
‘They seemed to enjoy it and that’s the important thing.’
There was so much food donated to the centre, that staff there ended up sharing some of it with other charities in the area, including Age Concern.
David Marlowe, 56, who uses the centre, said: ‘It’s generous of them and very thoughtful and it will be a huge benefit to lots of people.
‘This is a important facility and it’s good to see it getting support.’
Philippa Howe, 42, the services manager at the centre, added: ‘It is absolutely amazing that the soldiers thought of us when they had this food to donate.
‘I was gobsmacked when I walked in here and saw how much food there was, my jaw hit the floor.
‘What the armed forces have done for us, and what they do for the rest of the community, is just brilliant.’