Shoppers in Kettering were queuing outside the door at the new Salvation Army Trading Company charity shop at 40 Gold Street, Kettering on Thursday 26th November as it opened its doors to the public for the first time.
The opening ceremony was a huge success, with The Salvation Army’s Major Wayne Bungay cutting the ribbon to officially open the new store. The ceremony was accompanied by The Salvation Army band playing outside the shop before the first customers were welcomed inside.
Area Manager, Elaine Sanderson, was delighted by the local response to the shop opening: “We knew that the community was looking forward to seeing inside the new shop on Gold Street, and everyone’s reaction has been fabulous. Customers were coming through the door thick and fast and we really enjoyed meeting lots of new friendly faces. We had one especially happy customer who snapped up a Mulberry purse for only £24.99! There is such a vibrant community here in this part of Kettering and we are thrilled to be establishing a stronger presence here.”
Elaine continued: “We’re always looking for extra shop volunteers to join the Kettering team, and we’d like to encourage anybody who’s interested to pop in and talk to our friendly staff. There’s a whole range of tasks to get involved with, including merchandising, steaming and hanging clothes, ticketing and coding and we provide training on all aspects of the work. We 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’re also keen to encourage donations from the public, whether it’s clothes, shoes, accessories or homewares. We only ask that items are clean and in good condition.”
Profit from the sale of donated clothing contributes to the valuable social welfare work of The Salvation Army, including homelessness and addiction services, care for older people, help at emergency incidents, support for adult victims of human trafficking in England and Wales, a Family Tracing Service and much, much more. Over the last five years alone the Salvation Army Trading Company has donated over £35 million to the charity.
Customers visiting the new shop will be offered one of its 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.