Tesco has asked shoppers to give up peak online delivery slots so that isolated and vulnerable neighbours can receive vital food packages during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Supermarket giant has called on those who are well enough to come to stores to avoid using home delivery services in a bid to free up time for drivers to reach those in need.

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It comes as thousands across the country face tough decisions on how to access ‘essential items’ while remaining within strict social distancing restrictions.

Tesco CEO Dave Lewis confirmed the company had received a list of 110,000 “clinically and socially isolated” people from the UK Government to target prime delivery slots.

But he encouraged others to be wary of clogging up drivers’ daily lists and make the journey to stores - provided they are able to do so.

He added: "We have increased our online delivery slots by 145,000 in the last two weeks with hundreds of thousands more due to become available shortly.

"We know it’s still difficult to get an online delivery slot at the moment due to high demand, and we ask those who are able to safely come to stores to do so, instead of shopping online, so we can start to free up more slots for the more vulnerable.

"On Thursday, we were given an initial list of 110,000 clinically and socially isolated people by the Government. 

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"From these, we were able to match 75,000 existing customers and we’ve already contacted them to let them know we’re making home delivery slots immediately available to them.”

The supermarket has already recruited more than 7,000 new staff, including 2,000 new drivers to meet demand during the pandemic.