A POPULAR theme park near Romsey has helped support vulnerable families during the coronavirus lockdown by distributing stores of food.

Paultons Park in Ower gave food and treats to the community project Connect4Community, based in Romsey, after closing on March 20 in response to Government advice.

Operations director of Paultons Park, James Mancey, said: “At the point we had to close our doors, our catering department held large stocks of food in readiness for what we anticipated would be a busy Easter period, such as hot dogs, doughnuts, chocolates and many soft drinks.

“It was clear to us that the right thing to do was to avoid any unnecessary wastage.

"By donating food and drink stocks to a local community organisation which provides meals for vulnerable families, we were able to ensure that local people in need were able to benefit, too.”

A spokesperson from Connect 4 Community said: "A huge thank you to Paultons Park for donating some lovely food and drink treats to give out to our families.

"We are most grateful to be able give out these treats and I am sure our families were super happy to receive them."

During the closure, Paultons Park made its car parks available for mobile NHS testing.

James added: “We’re happy to have been able to support the national effort against the coronavirus outbreak in this small way. Until such time as we can welcome back our staff and guests safely, we’ll continue to investigate ways we can support local and national initiatives.”

As previously reported in the Romsey Advertiser, the theme park confirmed it will be opening its new themed land at Easter next year.

The grand opening of Tornado Springs at Paultons Park, which is also home to Peppa Pig World, was due to take place this month.

However, the Americana-themed family attraction had to be postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.