A FOOD delivery service feeding the city's most vulnerable has reassured customers it will continue to run at low prices - despite rising fuel costs.

Around 45 per cent of Britons said they have cut back on car journeys last month as the cost of diesel and petrol continues to surge, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Roast Out Catering, a family business delivering cheap, freshly-cooked hot meals to hundreds of elderly residents, has also been impacted.

However, owner Paul England wants to reassure those at the other end of the service that the business will continue to run, without major price increases, "no matter what".

The 54-year-old urged people not to worry, saying that although he doesn't know what the future holds, "I don't want to stop anyone eating a proper meal".

As the cost of living crisis deepens, the Daily Echo launched a new campaign – Your Money Matters – to raise awareness of the impact of the crisis in Southampton and offer practical help to readers through giveaways, competitions and deals.

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Paul said: "It's been really bad. Prices have gone up but not too high. It's all costs really - food costs, fuel costs, electricity and gas to cook the food.

"It's quite difficult to identify the solution because of all the different things that are going into it. Fuel costs are certainly one of them though."

On top of the pressure of rising costs, Paul says he and his wife Luci are dealing with the extra pressure of trying to avoid raising their own prices.  

The pair was already forced to up the price of an average hot meal from £5.80 to £6.80 following the pandemic.

Daily Echo: The service delivers to Southampton, Totton, Eastleigh, Romsey, Chandler's Ford, and NetleyThe service delivers to Southampton, Totton, Eastleigh, Romsey, Chandler's Ford, and Netley

Paul said: "We kept going through the pandemic. We kept the prices down to not stop anyone from eating.

"The prices did have to go up but we have had an amazing response. The customers said we do an excellent service. 

"I am just unsure about how it can carry on. I don't want any of our customers to worry because we don't plan on rising the prices or stopping but I don't know what the future will hold.

"We are not going to close down. We are going to keep going no matter what."

Rising prices any further would mean many elderly customers would not be able to afford his services, Paul says.

The family-run catering company was started by Paul's mother in 1998.

Every day, it delivers hot food for as little as £6.80 for a main course, including delivery, to more than 300 people across Southampton.

To access the service call 02380 326664.

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