We’re gonna need a bigger shop
Published on 17 August 2018 12:51 PM
Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s a superstore! Age UK Nuffield in Poole, Dorset opened in March of this year, and at 2,600 square feet, it’s by far the biggest Age UK shop to date.
At present, the shop has four members of staff, though due to the size of the shop, they’re on the lookout for more volunteers with a variety of skills, including a flair for creativity to assist with the innovative initiatives they’re looking to introduce.
Shop and donate
“The three main words above the shop’s door are: ‘Shop’, ‘Donate’ and ‘Recycle’,” explains Shop Manager Caroline Baker. “For shopping, we have a large selection of new and pre-loved furniture, as well as homeware, fashion and accessories. Donating with us is easy because you can park right outside the shop – parking is free – and there are staff here that will help you with your donations.” One of the shops four members of staff is a driver who supports one of the shop’s unique features. “We also have a free collection service, which makes it easier for people to donate items to us,” reveals Caroline.
Recycling and upcycling
“Recycling, which is the bit I get most excited about, is really important a Nuffield,” says Caroline. “We want to look at how we can become a more sustainable charity, so we want to reuse stuff, reduce waste, and recycle where possible.
“We want to set up a volunteer group for people that have a passion for fashion and that are interested in sewing, so we can start upcycling our clothes. That way, rather than sending items off that might end up as textile waste for landfill, we would be making them into something else that could be sold in the shop. We also want to upcycle furniture too. The space here allows us to accommodate volunteer groups like this.”
Challenges and solutions
“We’re a little tucked away, so we don’t have the passing trade that you get on the high street,” says Caroline, who’s used social media to raise awareness of the shop. “We didn’t realise our Facebook page would become as massive as it has. We sell items daily because of it. When new items come in, we post them to our Facebook page – we generally have a bit of a frenzy over our sofas! We do ‘Throwback Thursdays’ for ‘Friday Finds’ as innovative ways to highlight more unusual items. We also use it to tell people about why it’s best to buy second hand.”
Where to find the superstore
The Superstore is at Unit 2, Nuffield Trade Centre, Poole, BH17 0UF. Its opening hours are Monday to Saturday 9am-5pm, and Sunday 10am-4pm. You can contact the shop on 01202 649608.