NEW SHELTER for the homeless will open in an old Hereford hotel this winter as a charity works to keep people off the streets.

Vennture, the Herefordshire charity behind Street Pastors, has secured funding to transform Winter Provision for those facing homelessness this winter.

The initiative focuses on better support for those who have lost their home.

"It's a scary situation for anyone," said Rob Thomas, leader of Vennture.


"Our first goal is to get someone alongside the individual or family as quickly as possible.

"We want each person to know that they have someone to support them, understand their situation and work with them to get them a place of their own."

As part of the initiative, the Vennture team will work with local foodbanks, charities, faith groups, retailers and businesses, police, and CCTV to identify anyone presenting as homeless.

From December 5, there will be a friendly hub in the Merton Hotel between Monday to Friday 11am and 1pm where people can check in.

As a last resort, as part of the Transformation Grant, Vennture will also have access to seven safe, warm, well-supervised rooms for the night.


"Last year, I supported people who were afraid to use the night shelter," said Sam Pardoe, whose team will come alongside people this winter.

"One person I helped was terrified of going in the shelter after thinking he'd been stabbed with a dirty needle while in the shelter.

"This year, we now have the funds to create a truly safe and warm place that will be very different."

Collaborating with local door staff and police in running the safe warm space will make sure simple rules are followed so everyone feels safe.

Wardens will keep watch on everyone through the night and medical support will also be on hand from local nurses.

Members of the local homeless forum are working to provide daytime activities.

"This is an all-round team effort," said Reverend Simon Tarlton, chair of Vennture Trustees.

"Everyone has a part to play in caring for those who have hit the worst extremes of the cost-of-living crisis. We need to remember that no one plans to be in this place, and it could so easily be any one of us."

The initiative, which is built on a Night Shelter Transformation Grant from the Department of Levelling Up, has also been funded by The Eveson Trust, Hereford City Council, and Herefordshire Council and other local faith and charity groups.

Anyone interested in volunteering, working as a warden, supporting, or donating to the initiative can contact email or visit