Support volunteers to save Oxfam shop

Oxfam volunteers with petition: (from left) - John Welsh, Rita Nottage, Tony Leigh, Jan Withers, Daniel Hagge, Betty Matthews, Shirley Atkins, Carol Simmonds. Photo: (TIM WILSON): SG080312-113TWTo order picture please visit www.spaldingtoday.co.uk/buyaphoto or phone 01775 765433
Oxfam volunteers with petition: (from left) - John Welsh, Rita Nottage, Tony Leigh, Jan Withers, Daniel Hagge, Betty Matthews, Shirley Atkins, Carol Simmonds. Photo: (TIM WILSON): SG080312-113TWTo order picture please visit www.spaldingtoday.co.uk/buyaphoto or phone 01775 765433

SPALDING’s Oxfam shop is threatened with closure after nearly 50 years of trading in the town – but the volunteers who run it are fighting back.

They have started a petition to save the shop, and are asking potential customers to spend, spend, spend on its quality second hand clothes, books and bric a brac.

They’re also appealing for more volunteers to join them in the battle to bring it back into producing sufficient profit, after being told it must clear £25,000 on top of annual running costs to stay open.

Spalding Oxfam branch founder member Betty Matthews said: “We were warned in 2010 that we weren’t viable in Oxfam’s terms and needed to make more profit.

“The lease on this shop runs out in January 2013 and we’ve just heard that unless there’s a dramatic rise in takings, the shop will close in December.

“In nine months of 2011 it took £19,000 of which £8,444 was profit, which could provide drought-tolerant seeds for 844 family farms, or safe water in an emergency for 9,382 people, but it’s not enough.

“The people of Spalding have supported us magnificently for 50 years – we need you to support us now.”

Oxfam head of retail Chris Brown said: “Oxfam is proud that 83 per cent of what is given goes directly to the causes its raised for and we have to maintain that.

“But we’ll do everything possible to keep Spalding going.”