Recycling and rubbish collection days are also changing for some households in Mendip and South Somerset. Read about the changes and how they may affect you.

Getting started

We will only process applications for schools that subscribe to the Free School Meals service. All schools in Somerset, except King Arthur’s School, Wincanton, and The Mendip School, Prestleigh, Shepton Mallet, are subscribed. If your child attends either of their schools, please contact the school directly to apply for free school meals.

We strongly recommend that you read the rest of this page before you apply.



Food is available for any family in need of urgent food supplies during school holidays.

Children eligible for free school meals must be in school all day, and they will be provided with a meal at lunchtime which is paid for by the school.

It is the responsibility of the parents or carers to register their entitlement and request free school meals for their children.

Children in pre-school or nursery (known as childcare providers) do not qualify for a free meal until they start school. But applications will be processed so that when your child starts school, you will already be notified whether they qualify for a free school meal or not.

Parents and carers who receive any of the following are entitled to free school meals:

  • Income Support (IS)
  • Employment and Support Allowance (Income Related)
  • Universal Credit with an annual household income of less than £7400 after tax
  • Income-based Job Seekers Allowance (IBJSA)
  • Guaranteed Element of State Pension Credit
  • Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • Child Tax Credit provided they are not entitled to Working Tax Credit, with an annual taxable income (as assessed by HMRC) of less than £16,190

Only the benefits listed above qualify for free school meals. If you have recently become unemployed, but are still receiving Working Tax Credits, you may be entitled to free school meals. Please phone us on 0300 123 2224 for advice.

If you meet the criteria listed above, please complete the application form below by clicking on the Apply now button.

Apply for free school meals

This form has 4 pages and will take approximately 3 to 4 minutes to complete.

Or you can print out a copy of the application form for free meals at school, fill it in and take the completed form to your child’s school, or send it to – Entitlements Team, County Hall, Taunton, TA1 4DY.

Document preview
Application form for free meals at school

PDF, 141 KB

You do not need to send evidence with this application. If we need evidence later, we will ask you for it.

Universal Infant Free School Meals

Every child in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 is entitled to a Universal Infant Free School Meal. Each school is responsible for providing this, and they may ask you to fill in an application form to show that you require a meal for your child or children. Therefore, please contact your school to discuss arranging a meal.

Last reviewed: April 4, 2024 by Kate

Next review due: October 4, 2024

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