Christmas Service Closures and how to get emergency help

Christmas Service Closures and how to get emergency help

Christmas service closures and how to get support

Our advice and community services will be closed during Christmas and New Year. The Advice Centre is closed from Friday 18th December until Monday 4th January 2021. Here are our Christmas service openings and how to get emergency support during this time.


Toynbee Hall service closures

This year has been like no other and has been a very demanding time for our services teams. We’re taking a break over Christmas and New Year – here are our service closure dates:

Please note: Mailboxes and email inboxes will NOT be checked during these times.

The Advice Centre – The main Toynbee Hall Advice Line will be unavailable from 4pm, Friday 18th December until 10am, Monday 4th January.

City Advice – The City Advice line which is people who live, work or study in the City of London, will be unavailable from 4pm, Friday 18th December until 10am, Monday 4th January.

The Macmillan Benefits advice line will be unavailable from 4pm, Friday 18th December until 10am, Monday 4th January.

Debt Free LondonDebt Free London free phone line, WhatsApp, web and video chat and video kiosk services will be unavailable from 4pm, 23rd December until 10am, 4th January.

Free Legal Advice CentreThe Free Legal Advice Centre will be taking an extended break and will be unavailable from 4pm, Friday 18th December until 10am, Monday 18th January.

Community Centre activities just as conversation bubbles, exercise classes and Befriending services will be paused from 4pm, Friday 18th December until 10am, Monday 4th January.

How to get help when we are closed

If you need emergency support during this time, please visit Advice UK to find Advice Centres near you or for free legal advice, please visit LawWorks.

If you need emergency Debt advice between Thursday 24th December and Monday 4th January when Debt Free London services are closed, please visit nationaldebtadvice.uk.

Alternatively, please contact your local authority – here are our nearest local authorities which may be able to help:

It’s important to Check on friends, family and neighbours by phone. Uncertain times can affect people’s mental health, so it’s vital we look out for each other safely. A host of health and wellbeing resources are available from Tower Hamlets Council.

Tower Hamlets Council also have a dedicated phoneline for vulnerable residents to get support with self-isolation, supplies and urgent needs throughout the pandemic – 020 7364 3030

City of London020 7606 3030

Hackney020 8356 3000

Newham – 020 8430 2000

Other support available

#EndChildFoodPoverty website & new Food Support Map

The new #EndChildFoodPoverty website is part of Marcus Rashford’s campaign and will be launched on the 21st December. The website will feature a map which will allow people to find their nearest support from councils, local charities, food banks or other organisations helping to tackle hunger this winter. Find free children’s meals and other support near you: https://endchildfoodpoverty.org/help.

Kids can eat free in Asda cafes throughout December

All 216 of Asda’s cafes will provide children under the age of 16 with a meal completely free of any charge when accompanied by an adult. There are no minimum spend requirements or restrictions on the number of children in a family or group that can take advantage of this offer. Asda cafes located in areas with Tier 3 Covid restrictions will still provide this offer to local children via a takeaway service. The offer will run from December 1st to 31st December except Christmas Day when stores are closed. Find out more.

Red Cross Hardship Fund – cash grants to vulnerable clients

This Hardship Fund provides short term financial help for people that have been impacted by Covid-19 and can’t afford essentials such as food, somewhere to sleep, telephone or internet or fuel. Cash is paid into a pre-paid card and individuals can receive up to £360 and families up to £1,080. Statutory and voluntary organisations need to register as a Referral Partner to make referrals. Read more about the fund or register https://hardshipfund.redcross.org.uk/

Job Centres and advanced Universal Credit Payments

Jobcentres will be open at Front of House every day except for 24th, 25th and 28th December to assist vulnerable claimants.

They are also advancing Universal Credit payments that are due on 25th or 28th December to 24th December. All other benefit payments due on 25th or 28th are being advanced to 23rd December.

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