Churro Loco in Ipswich to open on Christmas Day to support the homeless

David Lockert of Churro Loco.

David Lockert of Churro Loco.

A community has pulled together to help give homeless people on the streets of Ipswich a better Christmas.

When David Lockert, owner of Churro Loco, decided to open his store on Christmas Day to offer free food to people in need, he didn’t expect the reaction he received.

In the past week, hundreds of people have visited the St Matthew’s Street shop to donate presents filled with toiletries and warm clothing to be given to people without a home during the festive season.

Mr Lockert said: “People are just pouring in with donations giving bags full of kit – I can’t believe it.”

Churro Loco has been up and running for three months and Mr Lockert said he was encouraged to take on the business by members of his family after recovering from a battle with alcoholism.

The 65-year-old said: “It’s not going to earn me any money but with the support of family it allows me to be here, meet the public and have a life to stop me from sitting at home with a bottle in my hand.

“I should have retired in May but if I didn’t have something to drive me I don’t know where I would be.”

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Mr Lockert, who was brought up in Clacton-on-Sea in Essex, said homeless people were fully embedded within the community where his shop was located and they needed to be supported rather than moved along.

The shop will be open from 10am to 2pm on Christmas Day.

Churro Loco has also launched a suspended coffee scheme, where customers are encouraged to buy a second hot drink to be collected later by someone in need.