As Mountbatten begins to reopen its charity shops across the Isle of Wight, there has been an incredible response by the community.
An influx of donations has been received at the charity’s main donation station at its Newport warehouse on River Way Industrial estate, which is now open between 10am and 4pm (closed for an hour at midday), 7 days a week.
Kath Bright, Mountbatten Retail Operations Manager, said: “We have been overwhelmed by everyone’s generosity. We haven’t stopped taking donations since we reopened the warehouse on 15 June.
“Once they have been held in quarantine for 72 hours, we can start to restock our shops and return to raising much needed funds to provide end of life care for patients across the Island, as well as supporting families through their bereavement,” Kath added.
Customers are also proving to be very generous; by the end of the first day of trading for Mountbatten’s Newport shop on Lugley Street, shoppers had raised double the shop’s usual takings.
In line with government guidelines, a number of changes have been introduced in the charity’s shops, including hand sanitiser points at the entrance, perspex screens and signs to support social distancing.
Nigel Hartley, Mountbatten CEO, said: “‘We understand that our new guidelines for safety can be challenging to some customers, as well as for our staff and volunteers. We ask for patience and understanding as we all come to terms with working differently, which impacts on everyone.
“We’ve really missed our customers and it feels wonderful to start welcoming shoppers back. Before the coronavirus outbreak, our shops would raise over £100,000 each month towards end of life care and bereavement support. Every penny is vital and it’s thanks once again to our Island community that we can continue to be there when Island patients and families need us most.”
Mountbatten’s shops across the Island are reopening in phases, as follows:
- Warehouse, Newport – OPEN ** This will temporarily be the only donation point; please don’t leave donations outside other shops **
- Mountbatten Newport, Lugley Street – OPEN
- Mountbatten Cowes, High Street – 29 June 2020
- Mountbatten Freshwater, Avenue Road – 6 July 2020
- Mountbatten Ryde, High Street – 13 July 2020
- Mountbatten East Cowes, Ferry Road – 20 July 2020
- Mountbatten Shanklin, Regent Street & Mountbatten Ventnor, Pier Street – 27 July 2020
- Mountbatten Bembridge Lane End Road & Mountbatten Wootton, High Street – 3 August 2020
For further information about Mountbatten’s charity shops and when they are reopening, visit www.mountbatten.org.uk/qa-about-shops-reopening