Kids eating lunch at school
Kids eating lunch at school

This September, thousands of Westminster’s school children are receiving free meals at lunchtime, saving hard-pressed families up to £570 per child, per year.

The massive expansion of the original lunch offer has been possible by additional funding from Labour-run Westminster City Council and mayor Sadiq Khan’s London-wide primary school scheme. 

This means that the Labour-run council has now extended the free school meal offer to include all council nurseries and voluntary sector early years settings that offer free entitlements and to all 11-14 year-old resident children attending secondary schools in the borough.

In addition, two year olds who currently access the Free Early Education Entitlement in the City will also receive free lunches from next week.

The free school meal offer has been a priority for the council as an urgent response to the cost of living crisis and Labour’s commitment to tackling inequality in our city. Since January 2023 Westminster City Council has been giving a free, nutritious and hot school lunch to every primary school child.

With the two schemes and the existing Government free school meals offer, 14,000 children will now be eligible for a free lunch in Westminster. Thanks to the Council’s £2.9 million Fairer Westminster investment (covering January 2023-July 2024) and the additional funding from the Mayor of London this will save families between £500 and £570 per child, per year.

Westminster Council Leader Cllr Adam Hug said 

“No child should go to school hungry. That is why we have provided funding for primary school pupils since the beginning of this year to help families during the cost-of-living crisis. I’m pleased that this week will see the start of our expanded free school meal scheme to nurseries and secondary schools which we extended with support from the Mayor of London’s funding. Since January, we know from families that this help has made a real difference and Labour is giving parents one less thing to worry about when managing increased costs.”

Cabinet Member for Young People, Culture and Learning Cllr Tim Roca said 

“This is another example of clear decisive action Westminster Labour is taking to help families during the cost of living crisis. It helps break down barriers between children in our schools, means they’re better able to focus on learning, and gives them a healthy nutritious meal.”


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