Lockdown Legends: How Ray Winstone and Kyle MacLachlan are helping to feed hungry UK children

Yahoo News UK

Barrie Knight is helping to feed starving kids in South East London by spinning some top tunes every other week, live on YouTube.

His Big Knight In You Tube Show features classic soul, funk and disco tunes as well as live music and video chats with a diverse array of stars such as Ronan Keating, Peter Gabriel, Ray Winstone and Kyle MacLachlan.

The show started after an encounter Barrie had with a local caretaker, who told him that as well as feeding the key worker’s children attending school, he was also trying to feed other local kids because they were starving.

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Speaking on video show Up Close And Socially Distant, Barrie, who has teamed up with Morrisons, said they have so far managed to feed 3,000 families.

“My next show I dedicated to just raising £1,000,” he told the show’s host Kate Thornton. “I went to Morrisons and I said, ‘If we raise £1,000 pounds, can I get some food for the kids and give them the bag to take home?’ Every time I send £1,000, Morrisons send £1,000 of food on top. So, we’ve done 3,000 families – and it’s growing.” 

Barrie said that due to the Government’s delay in sending out vouchers, he’s feeding more than just local school children now.

“The system the government are having, it's too slow,” he said. “You have to feed someone every day, not in a week's time. There is nothing coming in, so they're hungry. The kids are hungry.”

He continued: “It's opened up this bag of worms, so we're catering now for food banks, homes, old people's homes. Where there's no food, we are trying to help.”

Barrie knows only too well how hard it is to live on a low income – his own upbringing meant he relied on free school dinners.

“I lived on free dinners,” he recalled. “I lived on dinners that my mates' mothers used to give us – sandwiches and food. We survived as a unit looking after each other.

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“This day and age, society has changed. There's a lot of individual people, as well, who are struggling.”

As well as some classic tunes to entice you to boogie around your living room, Barrie’s Big Knight In also includes some celebrity chats and live music via Skype.

“We’ve got this nurse, who's our nurse doing this on the front line, plus she's singing as well!”

He continued: “It's all about being in your living room like the old days. And the kids are enjoying it. That's what it's all about – just enjoying yourself!”


You can catch the Big Knight In every other week on their You Tube channel. To donate to the Big Knight In food distribution scheme visit https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/barrie-knight

Up Close And Socially Distant is hosted by Kate Thornton and features weekly video catch-ups with people who are all doing whatever they can to help those around them get through lockdown.

This week, as well as chatting to Barrie about his You Tube show, Kate speaks to Denise Van Outen about volunteering to sew scrubs for frontline NHS staff and to Dr Ruth Glynne-Owen the CEO and Founder of the Blue Sky Autism Project about helping children with autism in lockdown. 

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