Leon has pledged to remain open to feed NHS and other key workers as scores of other operators wind down operations.

The healthy fast food brand said it had served 13,843 takeaway and delivery meals in the last week to NHS workers alone, which are sold at a 50% discount.

In a statement posted on social media, Leon said: “We have to do the right thing and continue to serve them.”

The company said no staff members would continue to work if they did not wish to, and would be supported in accessing the government’s job retention scheme.

The business said it was losing money by staying open, but had been inundated with requests and messages of thanks for continuing to serve food.

Speaking to Radio 4’s Today programme, Leon CEO John Vincent detailed how the company had turned its restaurants into shops, with Deliveroo and Uber Eats delivering food to people’s homes.

Leon has also taken on spaces within Sainsbury’s supermarkets that have been shut down, delivering food destined for restaurants that would have gone to waste.

The company has also set up an e-commerce platform to link customers at home with unsold food, and is appealing to operators to donate their unused products.

Please now box your food up in boxes that we can ship from you to people’s houses.

Vincent said: “What we want to do is what we’ve always done, and make it easier for people to eat well

“We have customers saying they can’t get food, people in NHS, and we have a lot of restaurants near hospitals, so we can continue to serve them

“If we do make a profit 100% will go to serving the NHS

“At the end of it I want to know, have I done the right thing.”