Friday, February 27, 2009

Sign 'o the times

So many stores and businesses are closing during this world economic recession, and even the charity stores are closing. An Oxfam store in the UK is closing tomorrow. The store would be similar to Goodwill or St Vincent de Paul in the US, as sales from items in the stores go to anti-poverty efforts.

In this article from the Halesowen News, writer Matt Maher documents the store's closing and the impact it will have in the area.

Oxfam, which has been based on High Street for the past 38 years, will shut its doors for the final time this Saturday, February 28.

The organisation was the first to open a charity shop in Halesowen but bosses have reluctantly decided to leave the town, blaming a fall in sales over the past two years and the end of the current lease agreement.

Kit Humpage, a volunteer who managed the store for 16 years until last August, said it was a sad day for everyone connected with the shop.

Kit, aged 87, said: “We are exceedingly sad.

“Many of us have been here a long time – we are all feeling down at the moment.

“We had hoped they might change their minds but once a decision has been made that’s it.”

Oxfam area manager Lisa Milner said the shop has seen a sharp drop in donations and sales since work began on the town’s regeneration two years ago – with only a minor improvement since it’s completion last November.

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