Assurances given over Peterborough meals on wheels service change

iCare have won a contract to deliver hot meals to Peterborough residents. Photo: Tim Williams ENGEMN00120131115095942
iCare have won a contract to deliver hot meals to Peterborough residents. Photo: Tim Williams ENGEMN00120131115095942
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Frail pensioners will not be affected by a change to the meals on wheels service according to Peterborough City Council.

The provider of hot meals is changing from private firm Apetito to another, iCare, at the end of January.

The council, though, insists the 60 to 80 residents who use the service at any time will see no difference once iCare take over on February 1.

The council says it is receiving a better deal from the change in provider, but due to ‘commercial sensititivity’ would notreveal the costs.

The change affects hot meals and not frozen ones, which Apetito will continue to deliver.

A two-course hot meal will continue to cost residents £5.20.

Users of the service will receive a letter with a meal this week from Apetito explaining the change.

The letter to residents states: “It is important to note that there will be no disruption to your service.

“We expect the quality of the food provided and the service offered will not be that different to the service you have received from Apetito over the last few years.”

Residents normally rely on Meals on Wheels for five to seven meals a week.

The council does not provide the service but brokers the deal with the private firm.

However, it does provide a subsidy to the firm which carries out the service.

The subsidy provides money to iCare to guarantee meals should fewer people use the service than they hope.

The council said it could not disclose what the subsidy is due to ‘commercial sensitivities’.