MP Jim Fitzpatrick keeps an eye on East End OAPs alone at Xmas

Poplar & Limehouse MP Jim Fitzpatrick

Poplar & Limehouse MP Jim Fitzpatrick - Credit: Archant

MP Jim Fitzpatrick is giving up part of his Christmas to make sure pensioners living alone in London’s East End are not left isolated over the Festive season.

MP Jim Fitzpatrick collects the dishes while volunteering at Neighbours In Poplar's luncheon club

MP Jim Fitzpatrick collects the dishes while volunteering at Neighbours In Poplar's luncheon club - Credit: Archant

He was volunteering at yesterday’s luncheon club at St Mathias Church Hall in Poplar High Street, in the heart of his Poplar & Limehouse constituency.

“I volunteer regularly at the club and target their Christmas lunch and just help out,” he revealed.

“There’s lots to do from 7am, from preparing the meals to collecting the dirty plates afterwards—and then there’s the washing up.”

But it doesn’t interfere with his Parliamentary business, he insists.

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“This is my Parliamentary business—these are my constituents,” he adds. “I make sure they have a merry Christmas.”

He is calling for neighbours to keep an eye on one another so that no-one is alone.

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“It’s absolutely critical that people on their own have contact with the community at Christmas,” the MP urged.

“We should always be involved with our community and keep an eye out for our neighbours.

“Britain today is an ageing population, 12-14 million pensioners and lots of them living alone—it’s a fact of life. So we all need to reach out.”

But neighbours in the East End do seem to keep a lookout for each other.

“I see this all the time when I’m out and about in the constituency,” Fitzpatrick added. “There’s still a real sense of community in the East End. People do look out for each other.”

But some “slip through the net,” he warns. So he appeals for more vigilance at Christmas to make sure those living alone are not left alone.

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