Disability charity fears losing half of retail income after superstore closure

17 Aug 2023 News

Transit Way superstore

Dame Hannah Rogers Trust

A charity that supports disabled adults has predicted that its retail income will halve this financial year due to the recent closure of its trading superstore. 

Dame Hannah Rogers Trust closed its Transit Way charity shop in Plymouth on 25 March after operating it for 14 years and losing the lease on the property.

The charity told Charity Finance that the superstore had generated 65% of its sales and the closure would have a “dramatic effect” on its retail income. 

In a social media post ahead of the closure, the charity said it had made every effort to remain on site but had received a notice from its landlord that the property would be let to another organisation.

“This has been a huge disappointment to Dame Hannahs, our staff, volunteer base and the local community we serve,” it said.

“Since receiving our notice, we have been looking for new premises but as yet we have only managed to find a suitable warehouse but we hope to find further shop premises in the near future within the local vicinity.”

‘Dramatic effect on our retail operation’

In its submission for the Charity Shops Survey 2023, to be published in the October issue of Charity Finance, Dame Hannah Rogers Trust revealed that its eight shops generated £822,000 during the year ending March 2023. 

The charity, which has an overall income of £6.5m, said that the loss of its trading superstore “will have a dramatic effect on our retail operation over the next couple of years”.  

“This had generated 65% of our sales and without this, we will make a loss this year and potentially for a couple of years to come as we cannot replicate its unique position locally and we do not have the resources to double the shops numbers required to replace its revenue stream,” Dame Hannah Rogers Trust told Charity Finance.

‘Our retail income is predicted to halve this year’

Daniel Burke, the charity’s head of fundraising, said that the charity has managed to keep all of the staff from the premises.

He said that he is hoping to have opened two “much smaller stores” by the end of the year”, which would “level this out and mitigate anything further”.

“From an income perspective, this has had a dramatic effect. Our overall retail income is predicted to halve this current financial year as the main superstore accounted for the bulk of our income and at best there will be no surplus and we have planned for a loss, but we have some time to hopefully evade that,” he added.

Charity Finance is packed with practical articles and analysis of the latest financial trends, as well as in-depth briefings on technical and legal changes, and benchmarking surveys to help busy finance teams get value for money. Find more information here and subscribe today!


More on