Homeless tuck into Christmas dinner at Euston Station

Volunteers standing in Euston StationImage copyrightNetwork Rail

London’s Euston Station will host a full Christmas lunch for 200 homeless people later, as public spaces UK-wide open their doors to those in need.

Volunteers worked overnight after the last train left on Christmas Eve – transforming the station concourse with decorations and tables.

The first guests arrive at 11:00 GMT for food, company and goody bags of presents, clothes and toiletries.

Homeless tuck into Christmas dinner at Euston Station
Homeless tuck into Christmas dinner at Euston Station

Gyms and theatres are also opening to the homeless on Christmas Day.

About 45 volunteers from Network Rail are turning out alongside charities St Mungo’s and Street Kitchen to provide “some festive cheer” at Euston, which is normally the UK’s fifth-busiest rail station.

Volunteers prepping the four-course meal of smoked salmon, soup, a festive roast and Christmas pudding – have been tweeting their efforts using the #EustonChristmas hashtag.

Skip Twitter post by @stevenaybour

#EustonChristmas

We are ready. This is one room of three. @networkrailpic.twitter.com/NfizdaPRbD

— Steve N London (@stevenaybour) December 24, 2017

Report

End of Twitter post by @stevenaybour

Skip Twitter post by @StMungos

Best wishes to staff at @networkrail@NetworkRailEUS helping people to travel home today. And then to the #volunteers transforming the concourse for our guests and others tomorrow #EustonChristmas. Big thanks to @stevenaybour@streetskitchen@streetvetuk#endroughsleeping

— St Mungo’s (@StMungos) December 24, 2017

Report

End of Twitter post by @StMungos

Skip Twitter post by @streetskitchen

And we begin getting prepared for #EustonChristmas at @CarltonPrimary

Going to be another busy busy day for all the wonderful volunteers

pic.twitter.com/tTeKoyggrJ

— Streets Kitchen (@streetskitchen) December 24, 2017

Report

End of Twitter post by @streetskitchen

Steve Naybour, a Network Rail engineer who helped come up with the idea, said the 200 guests would have a “great feast”.

“We’re going to give them the best day that they probably didn’t expect a few days ago,” he said.

He was one of four employees at Network Rail who suggested Euston be turned into a shelter for the day.

“It’s amazing to see the concourse looking so festive, which would normally be packed with commuters.”

Nearly 50 different businesses and organisations have donated items – including food, drinks and thermal clothes – to the event.

Mr Naybour, who goes back to work on Boxing Day, said he had been “blown away” by the generosity, adding: “We’ve got a whole department store of clothes we’re waiting to give out.”

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionNetwork Rail’s Steve Naybour: “Santa came last night” to Euston

Two hundred children from schools in the local area have made Christmas cards to give to the guests, while local kitchens have opened up to help volunteers prepare the four-course meal.

Beth Nordon, community and events manager for St Mungo’s, said: “Many people become homeless because of relationship breakdowns so Christmas can be a particularly lonely time for some of our residents.”

Elsewhere:

  • A theatre in Plymouth is opening its doors to offer homeless people a place to stay. Locals have decorated the foyer of the Palace Theatre and donated practical items like coats, shoes, blankets and jumpers.
  • Westlode Fisheries in Spalding, Lincolnshire, is opening on Christmas Day between 13:00 GMT and 15:00 GMT offering free hot meals for the “homeless, elderly or people who are struggling this Christmas”.
  • Burnley’s Muscle Factory gym is opening at lunchtime offering shelter, food and haircuts so that “no one should feel alone on Christmas Day”.

Similar Posts