WEAVER Vale MP Mike Amesbury says low pay and Universal Credit are to blame for a continued rise in the number of people being referred to the Mid Cheshire Foodbank.

Figures have been revealed by The Trussell Trust, which runs the Mid Cheshire Foodbank, showing that over the past year, 6,569 three-day emergency food parcels have been given out to Northwich and Winsford residents.

The latest figure shows that use of the foodbank is increasing at an alarming rate, rising by 113 per cent over the past three years.

The Labour MP, who is also the Shadow Minister for Employment, has hit out at the government following the news.

He says despite the government's advice to find work to get out of poverty, the solution is not that simple.

Mike said: "These figures are shocking but I wish I could say I was surprised, as rising hardship and the damage done by Universal Credit very much matches what we’re seeing in terms of casework in our office, and also what I’ve been told by volunteers when I’ve visited foodbanks throughout the constituency.

"The government likes to repeat the same tired mantra when challenged with facts like this – that ‘work is the best route out of poverty’, but a lot of people turning to foodbanks are working, many of them with more than one job, but still can’t make ends meet because their work is so insecure and low paid.

"The botched rollout of universal credit coupled with low pay is causing untold hardship in Weaver Vale and beyond. The Trussell Trust is not political, they’re just good people who are seeing first hand what it’s like on the ground and the government needs to listen."