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Age UK BRWF’s Charity Shop’s 10th Birthday Celebrations

Published on 03 August 2021 09:30 AM

Age UK BRWF's Providence Road Team are inviting members of its local community to join them in celebrating ten years since the opening of this much-loved charity shop in Sidemoor, Bromsgrove.

When it opened on 23rd August 2011, the shop was the local charity’s first venture into retail. Today, thanks to the hard work and dedication of Age UK BRWF’s Head of Retail, Sue Howdle, and her team, the charity now has eight shops across North Worcestershire (in addition to an online shop) which raise valuable funds to enable Age UK BRWF to provide support and services for older people aged 50-plus living in Bromsgrove, Redditch and Wyre Forest.

At the heart if the success of all of Age UK BRWF’s charity shops is it is people and three people who perhaps know the Providence Road shop best are Barbara, Lyn and Val, who have all been volunteering at the shop since it opened.

Speaking about her time at the shop Barbara said ‘It has been a pleasure for me to volunteer in the shop since day one and meet so many lovely people - the staff have become my very good friends. The shop has become an ‘Aladdin’s Cave’ – every day is different, and you never know what you will find!’

Lyn added, ‘It has been a joy to watch this shop develop into the lovely place that it now is. Its success is due totally to the dedication and vision of Sue and the team who are constantly seeking ways to improve and to ensure that there is the right mix of items in the store’. Lyn has also been reflecting on how attitudes towards charity shops have changed, adding ‘there used to be a stigma associated with charity shops, but people are now starting to recognise the role that charity shops can play in supporting the environment – one man’s unwanted items can be another man’s treasures.’

Speaking about her time at the shop, Val said ‘It is hardworking shop, but the team always go above and beyond to make you feel appreciated and it is a really happy working environment, with a sense of family. The shop has lots of regular customers, because people know that it is a place where they will always be made to feel welcome, plus they can find a wide range of items at really good prices.’

The Providence Road shop is managed by Age UK BRWF’s Luke Wardle who adds ‘Over the years I have worked in most of our eight shops, but having started in our Sidemoor shop, I've always gravitated back. In my time here I've come to see the important role that a charity shop can play in a community - it provides affordable shopping, recycles clothing in a sustainable way and raises vital funds for an important cause. It is also a place for people to come, often on a daily basis, and feel welcome and free to chat and to be part of our family

As part of the celebrations, the shop is organising its biggest ever raffle, including prizes donated by Asda Bromsgrove, Centre Flowers, Focal Image and Jukes Insurance Brokers. Tickets will be on sale in the shop from Tuesday 3rd August with the draw taking place on Monday 23rd August

Your local Age UK BRWF Shops

In addtion to our Providence Road (Sidemoor) Shop we have seven other Charity Shops across North Worcestershire as well as an online shop, so why not pay us a visit?