Shoppers in Hartlepool gathered outside the new Salvation Army Trading Company Ltd (SATCoL) shop at Jubilee House, York Road on Thursday 22nd January as it opened its doors for business for the first time.
The official ribbon-cutting opening ceremony was a huge success, with The Salvation Army’s North East Divisional Commander, Major Dennis Lomax, welcoming a long queue of eager bargain hunters. Following the red carpet ceremony, a buffet was provided to celebrate the occasion.
SATCoL’s Area Manager, Anthony Cummings, was delighted to see so many members of the local community flocking in on a grey January morning to show their support for The Salvation Army: “It was fantastic to see people gathering in support of the new shop. Having left our previous premises a couple of years ago, we are so pleased to be re-establishing our presence here in Hartlepool.”
Anthony added: “We’d like to encourage anybody interested in becoming a volunteer at the shop to pop in and talk to our friendly staff. There are lots of tasks to get involved with, including steaming and hanging clothes, ticketing and coding and we provide training on all aspects of the work. We really rely on the generosity of our volunteers, so if you think you can spare any time at all, from a few hours to a few days a week, please do get in touch.
“We are also always grateful to accept donations from the public, whether it’s clothes, shoes, accessories or homewares. We only ask that items are clean and in good condition.”
Profit SATCoL receives through the sale of donated items contributes to The Salvation Army’s work with people who are vulnerable and in need across the UK, including homelessness and addiction services, care for older people, help at emergency incidents, support for adult victims of human trafficking in England and Wales and a Family Tracing Service. Over the last five years alone SATCoL has donated over £39.5 million to The Salvation Army.
Customers visiting the new shop will be offered one of SATCoL’s innovative loyalty cards. The free ‘re:ward’ card rewards customers each time they spend £5 in the shop or donate their unwanted items using one of the shop’s reuseable ‘re:bags’. Each time a customer spends £5, one side of their re:ward card will be stamped, with 10 stamps entitling them to a £5 credit to spend in the shop. On the other side of the card is the reward scheme for donations, which works in conjunction with a re:bag – a reusable black, white and red bag that can be bought at the shop for 99p. Each time a re:bag is brought into the store full of donations, a stamp to the value of £2 will be given.
For more information on SATCoL charity shops visit www.salvationarmytrading.org