Retail Archives - East Cheshire Hospice

Charity Shops Reopen

Charity shops run by East Cheshire Hospice are back in business with a new-style operation.

 

Their long-awaited return after being closed for more than three months has brought an amazing response from both donors and customers.

The Hospice is using its premises on Chestergate as a distribution centre and is the only shop where donations of clothes, bric a brac and electrical goods can be taken.

An advance booking system means items are donated in a safe and controlled manner.

Goods are quarantined for 72 hours before delivery to shops at Thornton Square and Handforth, both of which reopened for sales to the public early last week.

Strict social distancing guidelines are followed at both shops and only card payments accepted. Opening hours are reduced from 10 am to 4 pm and fitting rooms closed.

Stock will not be sold at the Chestergate shop until further notice.

 

Commercial manager Louise Delany said: “It’s good to be back and we’d like to thank everyone for their patience and understanding during Covid-19.  It’s been a tough few months but hopefully with the support of our customers, we can start clawing back the revenue lost when the shops were closed.

“We’ve got some great bargains in our shops and our donation system is working extremely well with donors cooperating brilliantly. We’re opening our Thornton Square shop on Sundays on a trial basis.”

The Hospice can only accept a maximum of four bags for each allocated slot and cannot receive books, CDs, DVDs, toys and soft toys.

 

Bookings via 01625 511997 can be made between 10 am and 3 pm and use of Gift Aid will further support the charity.

The same telephone number can be used to arrange collection of unwanted furniture. Michele Slack has started her new role as furniture co-ordinator/assistant manager.

She said: “We’re on the lookout for good quality furniture. We were desperate to get the shops up and running again and huge numbers have donated items since we began accepting them late last month. Many donors said they held on to stuff because they wanted to give it to the Hospice.”

 

Lindsay McDonald, Thornton Square assistant manager, said: “Trade has been booming since we opened our doors and customers were so happy to see us back. We’ve had a lot of new customers as well.”

 

A new Hospice shop is expected to open in Poynton in September.

Shop Volunteers Begin to Return

Volunteers are relieved to back in familiar surroundings helping at East Cheshire Hospice charity shops.

Retired hospital sister Margaret Turner has returned to the Chestergate shop which is distributing donated items.

Margaret, a volunteer for 16 years including a decade at the Chestergate shop, said: “I’ve missed the company and when I met our customers in the town centre they asked when we were opening up again.

“The first month of lockdown was okay and I managed to get a lot of things done but then it became frustrating, especially as my social life had stopped.

“I couldn’t go to see the Halle Orchestra, the theatre, or Macclesfield Ladies Probus club where I’m a member. I also go to a luncheon club in Wilmslow and all those activities ended.”

Margaret Turner, an East Cheshire Hospice volunteer for 16 years.

Valerie Roscoe, also from Macclesfield, is a volunteer at the Thornton Square shop where she helps out twice a week.

Valerie said: “It’s been terrible during lockdown to be honest and I struggled to get up in a morning.  It’s good to back and I missed chatting to all the customers who’re all very friendly.”

Part of her time during lockdown was spent providing home schooling for 12-year-old grandson Bobby.

Valerie Roscoe, volunteer at the Hospice shop at Thornton Square.

Staff involved in the retail operation on which the Hospice relies heavily for its income are also glad to be back serving customers again.

M&S Flowers add colour to East Cheshire Hospice

From left, Hospice volunteer Mary Hindle with Marks & Spencer staff Ellie Holley, Helen Ross and Chris Birkenhead.

Floral gifts from Marks & Spencer are adding colour to East Cheshire Hospice and helping fund the cost of patient care.

Twice a week volunteers from the charity collect beautiful arrangements from the Handforth Dean store which have reached their sell-by date.

The flowers decorate the inpatient ward, Sunflower Centre and reception area while some are sold to visitors and staff in return for a donation.

Donations have raised £4,000 since the store started giving flowers to the Hospice a year ago.

Volunteer Mary Hindle, from Prestbury, said:  “It’s a generous gesture by M & S and when I deliver the flowers to the Hospice, they bring great pleasure to patients, staff, visitors and volunteers.”

Hospice Volunteer Co-ordinator Helena Smith said: “We can’t thank M & S enough for their kind support. The flowers are of an amazing quality and bring so much cheer to the Hospice.

“One inpatient wanted to give her daughter flowers for her birthday and was so happy when she realised they were available here.

“It was a lovely moment and meant so much to her.  Flowers are precious and bring colour and care, raising funds so we can look after our patients.”

Ellie Holley, Food Section Manager at M & S, Handforth, said: “We’re delighted to help East Cheshire Hospice as part of our on-going support for local charities. We value our role within the community and are glad flowers we can no longer sell to our customers make such a difference to Hospice patients.”

Review of the Year 2019

Fun and fundraising brought lots of smiles for East Cheshire Hospice supporters over the last 12 months.

Another packed colourful calendar of events meant the charity benefitted in many different ways.

Music, art, sport, fashion, travel, leisure and business were all thrown into the mix by generous donors.

Families were out in force at Light Up The Night at Capesthorne Hall, a poignant occasion which saw many walkers remember loved ones.

Community events included Splash Out! when young and old faced a series of water challenges, while dogs and owners tackled a testing obstacle course at Tough Woofer.

Taking a dip at Splash Out.

Mayor Janet Jackson in her charity shop outfit which she wore at Buckingham Palace.

Mayor of Macclesfield Coun Janet Jackson is a regular customer at the Hospice charity shop at Thornton Square where she picked up a bargain for a Royal appointment.

When she received the MBE from Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, she wore a dress and matching jacket she had bought from there for £25. Her hat cost £10.

Nick Robinson gives his speech at the Hospice’s Business Briefing

BBC journalist Nick Robinson gave a keynote speech at the Hospice’s annual Business Briefing at Alderley Park. Nick’s late father Robbie was cared for by the Hospice.

Round-the-world sailor Heather Broadbent.

Hospice supporter Heather Broadbent starts 2020 sailing off the coast of Australia.

She is aboard GoToBermuda competing in the Clipper 2019-20 Round the World Yacht Race.

Heather is going from Freemantle to the Whitsunday Islands on the latest leg of her 11-month voyage.

She is raising £40,000 for the Hospice where her late husband Adam  was a patient.  To donate go to dreamitnowdoit.com

Heather said: “I’m loving every minute and wouldn’t change it for the world. At sea I’m making memories and friends for life.”

Mother and daughter Kim and Nina Bennett with cockapoo Elsie at Tough Woofer.

Dressing the Mayor!

Looking smart is vital for Coun Janet Jackson, especially with a full diary of engagements as Mayor of Macclesfield.

That is where the East Cheshire Hospice charity shop at Thornton Square helps out, supplying most of Janet’s outfits.

A navy and grey dress and matching jacket bought from there for only £25 was worn when she received her MBE from Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, in January.

The hat for that proud day at Buckingham Palace was another bargain at £10. The Mayor is a regular customer at the Hospice shop and a new winter coat is next on her list.

Coun Jackson said: “I’m always getting compliments on what I wear and delight in telling people that my clothes are from the charity shop.

“It’s a win-win situation as far as I’m concerned. You can find fantastic clothes at a really good price and are supporting a wonderful charity.

“East Cheshire Hospice need a tremendous amount of money every day to keep their service going, so anything anyone can do by going along to the shop and buying an item or two is all to the good.

“I attend an average of five functions a week and try to have a different outfit for almost every occasion.

“With the attention on climate change, I’m also a sustainable Mayor and helping the environment.

I’m helping the charities and my pocket too.”

Coun Jackson, Labour member for Macclesfield Central, recalls fondly her royal honour rewarding her long-standing service to the community.

The grandmother-of-three has been involved in politics for almost 30 years and has sat on numerous council and charity committees.

She is chair of the Friends of Macclesfield Silk Heritage and generations of her family have worked in the town’s silk industry.

“The Palace visit with my family was a memorable day. I couldn’t believe it when I found out I’d got the MBE because it doesn’t happen to people like me.”

The Thornton Square shop sells clothing for all ages, handbags, purses, wallets, travel bags, rucksacks, jewellery and accessories, furniture, electrical goods, kitchenware, ornaments, pictures and frames, toys, books and games.

Manager Nicolla Burgess said: “We’re delighted the Mayor is one of our loyal customers. We sell good quality items and our shop does extremely well in terms of donations and purchases. We’re looking for good quality furniture and do need help on the vans with collections.”

Furniture is a big deal!

East Cheshire Hospice is looking for volunteers to collect furniture for sale at two of its shops.

The charity wants volunteers willing to drive on Fridays (9 am-4.30 pm) and Saturday mornings and therefore play an integral role within its commercial team.

The Hospice is also asking the public to donate furniture which provides a vital source of revenue to help fund the cost of patient care.

Commercial Manager Louise Delany said: “If enough volunteers come forward, we can draw up a rota therefore it might be someone only helps out once a month. Any time they can spare will be much appreciated.”

“It’s a two-person operation and full training will be given, so we need volunteers who are fit and healthy and able to lift furniture.

“They’ll collect goods from a donor’s property and deliver to our warehouse in Pott Shrigley or our shops at Thornton Square and Handforth where we have furniture for sale and on display.”

The Hospice accepts any good quality furniture that can be sold on, so providing it is not ripped or stained they will accept most items including retro, antique furniture, or items that can be restored.

It will collect sofas, table and chairs, bedroom furniture, side boards and any other miscellaneous items.  It also collects good quality electrical items.

Louise added: “I don’t think many people are aware we collect furniture and other national charities benefit from receiving furniture due to heavy advertisement.  We need to make the public aware we are also in the market for furniture and can arrange free collections.

“Our furniture range is hugely popular with our customers. Therefore, as soon as it arrives in our shops it’s sold within days.

“Our donors are extremely generous, providing us with good quality furniture to sell on to our loyal customers.

“We’re desperate for furniture and volunteers to help us collect the items.”

* To find out more email Louise Delany on ldelany@echospice.org.uk.

To donate furniture, call 01625 408992 (Thornton Square shop); 01625 404104 (Handforth shop).

Co-Op Local Community Fund

Your weekly shopping trip could be helping to support a unique service for young people in East Cheshire.

The Childhood Bereavement Service, run by East Cheshire Hospice, supports young people coping with loss and now it’s been chosen to benefit from the Co-Op Local Community Fund with 1% of every Co-Op own brand product bought by shoppers potentially going to support the service.

Shoppers will need to be Co-Op members and should sign up to support the Hospice here www.coop.co.uk/membership. Once the card is scanned after a shop, 1% will be donated to the Hospice.

The Bereavement Service delivers counselling, peer support groups and awareness raising activity such as training courses for teachers, youth workers and relatives. During 2017/18 it supported 226 children and young people and over 1000 family members.

Initially developed with funding from the Big Lottery Fund in 2013, the service now has no external funding so support from Co-Op shoppers will be hugely beneficial.

Corporate Fundraiser for the Hospice, Kate Bowmar, says research shows that support through bereavement is important for children and young people.

“The best way to safeguard a bereaved child’s emotional and physical well-being is to involve and inform them in an age appropriate way throughout the dying process and beyond,” she says.

“We’ve already received a mid-year payment of £830 donated by the local community and would love to continue this for the rest of the year,” adds Kate.

Shoppers have until the end of October to donate to the Hospice.

The newest member of our lottery team – Tara

A Tuesday morning telephone call to a lucky winner is one of the perks of the job for Tara Ward

Tara took over as Lottery Administrator at East Cheshire Hospice three months ago and supervises an essential part of the charity’s fundraising.

The weekly winner of the £1,000 jackpot is chosen at random with a different volunteer performing the all-important task of pressing the button.

Tara said: “It’s the best part of the job  when either myself, or my colleague Celia Stanley, make the call to let the winner know they’ve won. We’re making someone’s day.”

There are 6,000 members of the lottery and their support raises around £1,000 a day towards the cost of providing Hospice care to patients, their families and carers.

Apart from the weekly £1,000 top prize, there are 22 other cash sums. The £200 second prize is rolled over if it is not won, earning a potential £10,000 jackpot.

Tara, from Handforth,  was PA to the Head Teacher at Poynton High School before joining the Hospice.

She said: “I’ve also worked in the corporate sector and the Hospice is completely different. It’s a lovely set up and everyone is here for the same reason because they believe in the ethos of the Hospice.

“The lottery is an easy way to support us on a regular basis. People can play online by filling in a form online and we also accept telephone applications.”

The Hospice needs £7,500 every day to keep going and the lottery has contributed almost £3.9m since it began in 1995. Tickets are £1 a week and players can pay via direct debit at £4.34 a month.

Winning numbers are published on the website. To join go to eastcheshirehospice.org.uk/lottery or call 01625 433477 (Ext 2).

Hospice Shop Designer Sale

A Designer Sale is being held at the East Cheshire Hospice charity shop in Thornton Square on Wednesday, April 10, from 5 pm until 8 pm.

Outfits by famous designers will be on offer at a big discount to normal prices.

Shop Manager Angela Prior said: “Customers can just pop in on the night and have a look and find a beautiful outfit at an amazing bargain.

“We’ll be selling ladies and gents wear, wedding outfits, party and prom and cruise wear, men’s shirts and suits, leather and suede coats, handbags, shoes and much more.

“Our items will be new and nearly new, in various sizes and all in immaculate condition. Our first Designer Sale in November was a brilliant evening and highly successful.”

Angela, who took over in September, said: “I was made very welcome by the amazing volunteers who give up their spare time to help me and the assistant manager Kim run the shop, and by the regulars who pop in and share a story.

“I’ve been blown away by the donations received.  It feels more than a shop, we’re part of a lovely community.  We sell quality goods at low prices with free parking outside.”

The shop sells clothing for all ages, plus items including handbags, purses, wallets, travel bags, rucksacks, jewellery and accessories, furniture, electrical goods, kitchenware, ornaments, pictures and frames, toys, books and games.

Opening hours are 9.30 am to 4.30 pm Mon-Sat and its Facebook page @ECHShopatThorntonSquare is updated weekly.

Guy Rigby’s Award

An East Cheshire Hospice charity shop volunteer, who “lights up the room with his personality” has been given a special award.

Guy Rigby, who has cerebral palsy, has been presented by the Macclesfield-based charity with a Customer Champion Certificate to mark his great commitment and enthusiasm.

His working journey began 18 months ago when Guy, who lives in supported living accommodation, told his carer Sue Selby that he’d like to do something purposeful. Within weeks, Guy was welcomed on a part-time volunteer basis into the Hospice charity shop fellow volunteer Anthea Lee.

Sue says: “Guy began with some pretty basic jobs like stacking and tidying the CDs but soon he developed a great rapport with the customers and now he works mostly on the main till engaging with everyone who comes in.”

“Guy sometimes needs to take it slower than other people, but he’s always been able to light up a room with his personality and the customers in the shop have really taken to him”.

Hospice Volunteer Co-Ordinator, Helena Smith, says Guy is a real asset to the shop.

“He has grown massively in confidence and ability and is so good with people in the shop – both customers and other volunteers,” says Helena.

“Within the Hospice, we constantly work to adjust and adapt to peoples needs and its good that we can also take this into the community. Our charity shops act as little community hubs and Guy’s contribution is a part of that.”

The Hospice has three charity shops – in Thornton Square, Handforth and Wilmslow – which all run mainly with the help of volunteers. Full training is given and anyone who would like to commit some time as a shop volunteer can contact Helena on 01625 664984.