A new East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) shop in Attleborough was declared officially open this morning.

A couple from the town, Ann and Roger Kerrison, celebrating an incredible 30 years of volunteering for EACH in 2019, were on hand to cut the ribbon at the former Barclays bank in Queen’s Square. Customers then went through the doors to spend £527 in the first hour.

Jason High, EACH Shop Manager, said: “We’re thrilled to be back in Attleborough, having reluctantly decided to close a much smaller shop in the town some years ago. We really hope we can kick on from here to properly establish ourselves as part of the community. Big thanks to Ann and Roger for coming along to open the doors. I think it was a great way to show just a small amount of appreciation for what they’ve done for EACH over the years. We look forward to seeing more customers in the coming days, weeks, months and years. Please do get in touch if you have items to donate or a few spare hours to volunteer.”

The shop will trade six days a week from Monday to Saturday, offering the same range of high-quality goods customers of EACH’s 17 other Norfolk shops are used to.

Ann and Roger started supporting EACH after retiring from leading roles at St Mary’s Residential and Nursing Home, in New Buckenham, in 1979. They helped establish EACH’s hospice in Quidenham, assisting with the setting up of the kitchen and Ann, as a trained nurse, interviewing members of the first care team.

Attleborough couple open EACH shop

The hospice opened in 1991 and was a home-from-home for more than 25 years before it was recently vacated for The Nook, the charity’s new purpose-built hospice in Framingham Earl. At the launch of the appeal to raise £10 million for it, at the Norfolk Showground in 2014, Ann and Roger met EACH’s Royal Patron, HRH The Duchess of Cambridge.

In the years between they did a huge amount of fundraising for EACH, from placing collection boxes around the region to taking part in the charity’s Ride for Life cycling event, and by 2014, the year of their 50th wedding anniversary, they had raised £50,000. They also gave up hours of their time volunteering in EACH offices and at the charity’s fundraising events.

Ahead of the opening, Roger said: “We’re very honoured and happy to open this new EACH shop in the town and wish them every success for the future.”

EACH’s retail portfolio is growing at a fast pace, with nine shops having opened last year. This latest one in Attleborough is its sixth of 2019 and 41st overall.

The charity welcomes donations of the following clean and good-quality goods: clothing, bric-a-brac, modern paperbacks, toys, jewellery, DVDs/CDs, household linens, retro and vintage clothes, and small electrical items. These can be dropped off at the new shop now.

EACH also needs donations of good-quality furniture and can collect it free of charge if you are unable to transport it yourself. Call 01842 821620 for more information.

To put into context the difference just a small donation to a shop can make to the vital work EACH does, here are some examples of what your donation could pay for:

–         A top, skirt or pair of trousers worth £5 could pay for art supplies for a session of art therapy

–         A tea set worth £11 could fund an hour of specialist play tailored to a child’s individual needs

–         A nice wedding hat or jacket worth £19 could pay for an hour of vital physiotherapy

–         An item of good-quality furniture or prom dress worth £24 could fund an hour with a psychologist to help guide and support families going through, likely, the toughest period of their lives

In the past financial year EACH shops generated an impressive profit of over £1.1 million that all went towards helping families make the most of their precious time together. EACH currently offers care and support to 124 children and young people, and 174 family members in Norfolk, as well as hundreds more across the rest of the region.

Anyone interested in more information on volunteering at the new shop should email Jason at jason.high@each.org.uk, call him on 01953 715588 or just drop by for a chat.