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Kent MP Damian Collins banned from Folkestone's Big Boys Fine Burger Co over free school meal vote

A burger bar has hit out at a Kent MP and banned him from its restaurant after he failed to vote to keep free school meals during the holidays.

Big Boys Fine Burger Co in Folkestone, says it has barred the area's MP Damian Collins, but is also offering to feed hungry children in the town.

The Big Boys Fine Burger Co in the Old High Street, in Folkestone. Picture: Google Maps
The Big Boys Fine Burger Co in the Old High Street, in Folkestone. Picture: Google Maps

Earlier this week, just one Kent MP voted in favour of a bid to extend free school meals for the country's poorest pupils over the holidays.

Canterbury's Rosie Duffield was the only parliamentarian from the county to back the measure, as a motion to feed more than 1.4 million children was rejected with a majority of 61.

The proposals backed a scheme, highlighted by footballer Marcus Rashford who gained more than 300,000 signatures in a petition to support it.

Since then scores of restaurants and takeaways across the county have backed Rashford and are offering to feed hungry children in their areas during the holiday.

An initial post on the Big Boys Fine Burger Co Facebook page yesterday, said: "It shouldn’t be up to us to step in and ensure that children don’t go hungry during the school holidays, but here we are, standing with Marcus Rashford.

Damian Collins
Damian Collins

"If you’re a Folkestone resident with a child or children eligible for free school meals, drop us a message or call us and we’ll make sure they don’t go without during half term. #Folkestone #schoolmeals

Then, a post later today added the Folkestone & Hythe MP has been barred from entering the venue.

The post said: "By the way, Damian Collins, you're barred.

"Voting to leave kids hungry at a time like this goes completely against what I believe is right.

"How you justified it to yourself is beyond me.

"Don't worry though, you'll still be able to get your government subsidised meals from the parliamentary cafes, restaurants and bars."

The move was welcomed by others who follow the restaurant on Facebook.

David Edwards said: "Great idea except he never comes to Folkestone anyway. #NotmyMP

Lisa Monk-Jones posted: "I didn't think I could like you guys more, and then you go and raise the bar again! Well done!"

The burger joint has told those families in need to get in touch at least a day before, either through the team's social media accounts or via email: guy@bigboysburgers.co.uk

Damian Collins has been contacted for a comment.

To find out which businesses in Kent are offing free meals for youngsters during half term, click here.

Read more: All the latest news from Folkestone

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