New hub will be at heart of the community

published on 8 Nov 2021

People in Leicester are being invited to a new community hub which was launched by The Salvation Army earlier this month.

The church and charity opened a shop and coffee shop at its Ladysmith Road Centre, South Wigston on November 1.

Funds from The Salvation Army charity shop and coffee shop will be used for local projects.

Shop manager Charly said: “We have lots of good quality stuff at reasonable prices and all the money we raise will stay here in Leicester South. Our first day was a great success. We had customers waiting outside for us to open. All comments were very positive. We are so pleased the customers enjoyed their experience.”

Andrew Richardson and Charly Leicester
Andrew Richardson, centre manager, and Charly, shop manager, hope the new facilities will help the community return to normal

The newly refurbished Loaf & Bloom Coffee Shop will serve hot drinks, sandwiches, cakes and a daily special and is a safe place to come and relax. Catering Manager Mike and his team of volunteers provide a friendly environment for catching up with friends, and a listening ear. People can also work remotely.

The Corps Officers and Community Team at The Salvation Army have been working hard over lockdown to create a welcoming hub. Centre Manager Andrew Richardson said he hoped the new facilities would help the community return to normal.

He said: “It would be nice to think people could come down and feel safe knowing we are here. We’ve taken steps to make everything COVID-secure.”

Like Salvation Army churches across the country, Leicester South has supported the community throughout lockdown and as restrictions begin to ease, Andrew said the new community hub would help strengthen that role.   Leicester was the only part of England not to emerge from lockdown last summer.

“The community hub will mean something good will come out of something bad - we’re hoping this will be a fresh start.
Andrew Richardson, Centre Manager

Andrew said: “Over the last 18 months, our food bank has given out 26,000 meals and also provided affordable clothes.  We helped one family who had nothing but the clothes they were wearing. They moved into a hostel and we gave them clothes, books and something to do.

“The community hub will mean something good will come out of something bad  - we’re hoping this will be a fresh start.”

The charity shop will be open from 9.30am to 2.30pm, Monday to Friday, while the Loaf & Bloom coffee shop will be open from 9.30am to 3pm.





A Christmas lunch at a Salvation Army church

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