Bristol has such a reputation for political corruption in the 18th century that the people of Manchester refused to obtain their right to have mps. But when food shortages happened Bristol mps often helped fund charities for the starving poor & even imported ships full of grain from the Baltic for them.
Bristol was also infamous for bits formidable mob, especially the Kingswood colliers whose objections to toll roads led to such vandalism becoming a capital crime.
Across the 18th century there were many food shortages. At the start and end these were mostly due. Too bad weather and harvest failures but some were in the autumn when food became plentiful so were the result of speculation.
This post was going to be about the history of food sustainability in the uk. But the point of the above shows that even in Bristol the rich had to help the poor. Rioting became a common means of changing laws at the time.
In the 1970s a charity was started, The Hunger Project which claims that you cannot have widespread hinger in a democracy. Yet here we are. Fighting over toilet rolls.