2 December 2020
A community hero from Drylaw, Edinburgh, who helped deliver 150,000 meals to families has been crowned as the city’s ‘Local Legend’ by a prestigious judging panel, including Captain Sir Tom Moore, for his selfless efforts during lockdown in 2020.
Allan Hosey, aged 65, was nominated for Virgin Media’s Local Legends competition – which recognises those who have made a significant contribution to their communities during the Covid-19 pandemic – by those that witnessed first-hand his incredible commitment to deliver 150,000 meals to homes in Edinburgh.
Providing meals to families in need became an urgent issue after schools closed due to Covid 19. Mr Hosey, who spearheaded the effort, said it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedication of volunteers, community groups and local businesses.
He said: “Everyone deserves a good meal and we wanted to ensure that no one went hungry. It was a real community effort made up of 200 volunteers and numerous community groups and businesses who worked around the clock in addition to their day jobs.”
Providing 150,000 meals to children and families during the initial lockdown meant Mr Hosey and his team had to turn to all forms of transport available to them. He added: “Our team used vans, cars, bicycles, wheelbarrows, anything we could get our hands on to get these meals delivered.”
The winners of Virgin Media’s Local Legends competition, which launched to celebrate the switch-on of gigabit broadband services in the city, are awarded a tech makeover to the tune of £10,000 as well as Gig1 broadband for two years.
Captain Sir Tom Moore, a member of Virgin Media’s Local Legends judging panel, said:
“What Allan and his team of volunteers did in Edinburgh is nothing short of incredible. Delivering 150,000 meals is no mean feat and, because of their selfless efforts, thousands of people benefitted from it. He’s a worthy winner of Virgin Media’s Local Legends competition and I congratulate him and his team of volunteers for his work in his community.”
Konnie Huq, a member of Virgin Media’s Local Legends judging panel, added:
“Allan and his team of volunteers are simply incredible and epitomise everything that we were looking for as part of Virgin Media’s Local Legends competition. It was a real community effort and he and his team should be immensely proud of what they achieved, as should the whole of Edinburgh.”
In further evidence of his dedication to the local community, Mr Hosey decided to donate all of his tech prizes to youth groups, charities and community organisations in the area.
“The £10,000 of tech equipment will go a long way to help those that need it most. Fresh Start, a homeless charity, will hugely benefit from gigabit broadband and the games consoles, TV’s and other devices will also go to great use with other youth groups”, he said.
Mr Hosey has called on residents in Edinburgh to be mindful of those around them with another lockdown in force in the country. He said: “We all need to work together and help those that need it most. Covid-19 has affected all of us in so many different ways so we should all look after one another.”
Mr Hosey was voted the winner for Edinburgh by a prestigious judging panel made up of Sir Captain Tom Moore, TV presenter and children’s author Konnie Huq, members from Edinburgh City Council and a Virgin Media representative.
Virgin Media’s Local Legends competition has also been running in Liverpool, Glasgow and Leeds with future locations set to be announced in the near future.
On behalf of Mr Hosey, he would like the below to be credited:
Donations and or catering staff time included:
· Walter Scott & Partners Ltd: (global equity investment management)
· Baillie Gifford (Large-scale investment business)
· Porto & Fi (local café)
· Social Bite (social enterprise)
· Scran Academy (catering industry training for teenagers)
· NEA café
· Low Income families Together (LIFT) project
Volunteers who helped with deliveries came from:
· Spartans CFA,
· Muirhouse Youth Development Group (MYDG),
· Pilton Youth & Children's Project (PYCP)
· Drylaw Neighbourhood Centre,
· Community Renewal
· Ferryhill, Craigroyston, Pirniehall, Forthview, St David's and Granton primary schools
· Granton Community Gardeners
· North Edinburgh Arts,
· Scran Academy
· Drylaw Rainbow Club
· Pilton Equalities Project (PEP)
· and individuals from the local community and beyond
· Politicians from all four major political parties (Conservative, Labour, Lib Dem and SNP)