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Society Diary: How do you spend £20,000 in one charity shop? 

01 Nov 2019 Voices

How long would it take for a charity shop till to print out the receipt for £20,000-worth of sales? * Answer definitely not included in the article

Happy Friday readers. Diary is sad to report that instead of waking up in the Land of Milk and Honey following the UK’s glorious departure from the European Union, we have in fact been condemned to a general election campaign and six weeks of politicians arguing about whose fault it is that things have not gone to plan. 

Fortunately Diary is not a charity and therefore free to be partisan and would like to take this opportunity to throw our (but, the bosses would like us to point out, not Civil Society Media’s) full support behind the Monster Raving Loony party. 

Onward with this week’s charity snippets, and we’ve taken a look at how Halloween can be spooktacular for charity and report on an incredibly successful opening week for one charity shop. 

Frodo’s Halloween house of fun

Halloween is an increasingly important date in the charity fundraising calendar, and despite being a big fraidy cat Diary has been to visit Andrew and Helen Damms along with their 7ft pet dragon, Snoddy from Snodland.

Andrew and Helen, and Snoddy, who has hopefully been neutered by the RSPCA and has all the proper breeding documentation, started their scary décor in the front garden.

But then giant spiders invaded, and over four years spread into back garden, conservatory, side garden and various areas of the house. 

Someone needs to get a broom out and get into those high corners…I know a nice lady who’ll do it for £15 an hour and a pass to London Zoo.

The Damms welcomed hobbits into Cirith Ungol on Halloween night, and asked merely for their purity and innocence, and donations to Cancer Research UK.

A stranger walks into a charity shop and… 

It may sound like the opening to a dodgy joke, but that was the start of a headline from the Manchester Evening News, whose which read “Stranger walks into south Manchester charity shop and donates £20,000” certainly grabbed Diary’s attention. 

As a frequent visitor to charity shops for both professional and bargain hunting reasons, Diary was astounded to learn it is possible to spend that much in a charity shop in one go, when often just £20 will go a long way. 

Could it be that one person had quite literally cleared a charity shop out of all its stock, in which case an urgent appeal is surely on the cards. 

But it turns out that the donor had walked into the Cats Protection shop in Manchester on its very first day with the express intention of donating the generous amount in memory of her late mother. Taking £20,000 within the first few minutes has got to be some kind of charity shop record. 

Which makes Diary wonder how many other people out there are sitting on wads of cash waiting for a shop to open nearby. So ignore the doubters who fret that charity shops are “taking over the high street”, as if this is a bad thing, go forth and open as many as possible.  


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