Café owner offers free Christmas lunch to the lonely

Wednesday 20th December 2017 7:00 pm

Ahmet Acikel outside his café

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AN ABERYSTWYTH café owner has made a heart-warming offer to those facing the prospect of spending Christmas alone.

Ahmet Acikel, a Turkish national who has lived in Aberystwyth with his family for over 17 years, is inviting people who may be alone on Christmas Day — whether they are homeless, elderly or otherwise — into his cafe to share a free meal and each other’s company.

Speaking to the Cambrian News this week, Mr Acikel, owner of Home Café on Pier Street, modestly played down the gesture and said he was “happy to help” those in a less fortunate position than himself.

“I am open on Christmas Day anyway — I have a few bookings — and I thought I might as well stick a couple more turkeys in the oven,” he said.

“I have got elderly customers coming in so I thought I might as well do it for the others — those without a home, or older people who have got no family.

“As a local business, I want to help people. I want them to come in as customers. I want them to know there is a place for them anytime.”

Asked if he thought the problem of homelessness and loneliness was getting worse in Aberystwyth, Mr Acikel said he didn’t know, but invited anyone who is interested to drop by for a coffee and a chat.

“I see a few homeless people around. They can get in touch with me or come in for a coffee. I would be more than happy to help them any way I could."

See this week’s Aberystwyth paper for the full story, available in shops and as a digital edition now

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