A charity superstore has opening in Catterick Garrison.
Cancer Research UK’s newest charity superstore will open at Princes Gate Retail Park, in the former Office Outlet site, on Thursday, December 17.
The shop is 6,000 sq. ft and will sell everything from furniture to electrical items, clothing and soft furnishings.
The new store, which is the 25th superstore for the charity, will be managed by Graeme Barker, who has joined the charity from a North East autism charity.
Graeme, 58, said: “I am delighted to be the manager here.
“I hope people will pop in and discover the huge range of quality items on offer at bargain prices. The team and I are raring to go and I think we have a perfect location and community to make this shop a success.
“Four of the team have partners based at the Garrison so we have local expertise on the shop floor.
“There’s plenty of free parking right outside, so it is easy to drop off donations with us and with Christmas just around the corner there will be chance for people to get all their presents for loved ones under one roof, while helping Cancer Research UK.”
The new shop opening is some much needed good news for the charity, which has recently announced a further £45 million cut from its research budget.
This is on top of £44million announced in the summer.
The new cuts have led to 24 fewer research programmes, 68 fewer projects and 12 fewer fellowships, and Cancer Research UK says there will be around 328 fewer researchers working on their research.
Josephine Mewett, head of retail operations at Cancer Research UK, said: “COVID-19 has hit us hard.
“Our shops across the UK typically contribute more than £25million every year to vital research. Cancer Research UK has suffered a dramatic loss of income since they were forced to close at the end of March, so to have a new superstore open in the North is worth celebrating.
“To save lives tomorrow, we need the public’s support today, so we hope people will turn out in force to support our new superstore.”
Customers are a key part of helping to get the charity’s life-saving work back on track, so strict measures are being followed to ensure people in Catterick can shop, volunteer and donate goods safely.
These include social distancing, hand sanitiser stations, cough guards at till points, face coverings and gloves for shop staff and volunteers and additional cleaning.
Graeme added: “Cancer Research UK funds nearly 50 per cent of the cancer research in the UK, so it’s vital that people in the area support this new superstore.
“We expect to see our fundraising income decline by up to 30 per cent in the financial year ahead – putting our research at risk. Like my mum and I, we are all too aware that cancer doesn’t go away during or after COVID-19.
“We are incredibly proud of our community of researchers and the charity supports thousands of scientists and world-leading initiatives in all parts of the UK, all with the aim to improve the lives of people with cancer.”
As well as donating goods, local people can show their support by joining the Cancer Research UK shop team as a volunteer.
The store has a number of volunteer roles on offer from serving customers to merchandising the displays.
Graeme added: “People can help get our new shop off to a flying start by shopping with us, generously offering their time as volunteers or donating stock for our shelves. In particular we are asking for donations to boost our furniture department. It all helps towards our goal of beating cancer sooner.”
Cancer Research UK has plans for four more retail superstores to open in the UK by April next year to help continue its life-saving work.
The Catterick Garrison superstore will be open seven days a week.