A VILLAGE cafe owner is to spread some festive cheer by delivering slap-up meals to people who will be on their own at Christmas due to pandemic restrictions.

Michelle Hall will be delivering the three-course treat to anyone who is vulnerable, lonely or just fed up with the coronavirus crisis.

The meals will be free of charge due to donations from generous residents living near her Boat Shed Cafe at Lochgoilhead.

“We all look out for each other and I thought that with so many people being unable to have their relatives with them it would be nice to do something for them,” Hall told the Sunday National.

She will be helped in the kitchen on Christmas Day by her daughter Holly and staff member Clara Von Kaehne who is making festive fudge as an extra gift to go with the meals.

It’s not the first time Hall has stepped up to help the community survive the pandemic as she made meals for vulnerable local residents during the lockdown.

These were so popular she was often cooking 30 at a time, delivered at cost price.

This time, because of the generous donations, those who have signed up for the Christmas dinners will be treated to prosecco and smoked salmon parfait, turkey with all the trimmings including haggis, pigs in blankets and sprouts with smoked bacon, and white chocolate and lemon posset to follow.

Once the meal is cooked, the team will spend Christmas morning ferrying the meals around the area.

“I aim to get them to everyone by 2pm and then I will come back and do my own Christmas,” said Hall, who also ran a community online quiz on Saturday evenings during the lockdown.

The cafe, which only opened 18 months ago, was becoming very popular but like thousands of others was hit by the lockdown.

“I thought this year was going to be really good as we put a terrace outside right on the loch and people started hearing about us and driving to us as a destination,” said Hall. “We did well the first year and I knew this was going to be a good year so when the shutdown happened at first I couldn’t believe it.”

As a result she had to lay off a couple of part-time staff which she said was “heartbreaking”. When the lockdown lifted, business picked up although it has died away again during the winter.

“I am sure the cafe will do well again once we get back to normal,” said Hall.