Heartwarming Stories Of Christmas Spirit: Pubs And Takeaways Offer Free Meals To The Homeless

When we're stressing about overcooked turkey or whether our other half really liked that painfully expensive watch, it's easy to forget that for people in need Christmas can be just another freezing winter day.

But some businesses are offering free roast dinners to people who would otherwise have nowhere to go this Christmas.

The head chef at a pub in Islington, north London, has offered to make a free Christmas lunch for 100 homeless people and people in need this Sunday.

Adam Hardiman, head chef at the William IV, decided to place a sign outside the pub offering a free festive meal last weekend when he was having a quiet day in the kitchen. He posted a photo of the advert on Twitter and it has now had nearly 7000 retweets.

He said: "I was having a quiet Sunday and I was fed up. I thought I would rather do this for people that really need it.

"Anyone can end up on the street and I probably would be too if it wasn’t for my mum. She’s a hero."

The pub has been overwhelmed by support and offers of help from people on Twitter, which Hardiman has refused to accept, instead asking that people offer to pay taxi fares for homeless people to reach the pub.

The 30-year-old chef said: "I think the support we’ve had is amazing but it’s also kind of sad. Everybody should be doing this every day of the year. It shouldn’t a surprise when we do it.

"Anyone in London who knows a homeless person should get them a taxi and send them here on Sunday.

"It’s always been a dream of mine to help the homeless. If I could, I would do it every day."

Staff have agreed to give up their time to help serve the roast, which will be offered from 12-3pm.

A takeaway in south London is also offering free meals to those in need, or with no one to spend the day with:

Cumin' Up Caribbean restaurant in Lewisham are offering food and company to people who are homeless or struggling on Christmas day.

Owner Richard Simpson has been inviting those in need to spend Christmas at the restaurant for six years now.

He said: "About two years ago, we found a man on the streets, we later found out that he couldn't speak English.

"We found him rummaging through one of those Bluebird Bins for food, I just couldn't believe it on Christmas Day.

"We managed to sign eating to him and he eventually understood and we got him in for a meal, that's what it's all about."

Cumin' Up Caribbean serves a traditional roast with a Caribbean twist, offering up jerk chicken and rice along with traditional turkey, brussel sprouts and stuffing.

The restaurant served 40 people a free Christmas dinner last year, but has had as many as 100 guests in the past. Volunteers and friends donate food to help the restaurant provide for as many people as possible.

Simpson said that anyone is welcome: "What we do is a small thing but it has to start somewhere, I do it so that I can teach my children the value of giving at Christmas.

"I'm not sold on the whole commercialisation of Christmas, I'm a born again Christian and we need to share the love, we just want to slow life down.

"We even set up tables on the pavement so that people who live with their dogs can have a Christmas meal with them."

The Grub Club have organised a 'bring your own Christmas' event to offer people who are alone in London on Christmas day the chance to spend time with friends or meet new people over a glass of mulled wine.

Guests are encouraged to bring their own dish and bottle of something festive and are hosted in a swanky flat in London Bridge, provided by Airbnb.

The event is now sold out and all money made ticket sales is donated to homeless charity Crisis, which serves 4000 homeless people Christmas dinner and also offers them warm clothes and a health check up.

Speaking to HuffPost UK Lifestyle, Jon Sparkes, Chief Executive of Crisis, said: “Crisis at Christmas is a lifeline for thousands of homeless people across the UK, offering support and companionship during the holiday period and the opportunity for people leave homelessness behind for good. Crisis at Christmas is made possible through the generosity of thousands of individuals, community organisations and companies who donate money, time, skills, goods and services.”

Have you spotted any other displays of Christmas spirit? Tweets us @HuffPoLifestyle.