SILVER anniversary tidings rang out from the Cancer Research charity shop in Swadlincote this week, as staff marked 25 years since it opened.
The celebratory mood was high as manager Alison Woodfield and volunteers were joined by fund-raising stalwart Betty Simms to cut the cake and toast the longevity of the store, in the Delph Centre.
Mrs Simms, who lives in Melbourne, has been awarded an MBE for her services to the charity, but has strangely never been involved in the shop. She came along as a special guest.
Manager Ms Woodfield said: “We wanted to do something special, and the celebrations have been wonderful.
“Betty was wearing her award, and she was such a lovely lady. Having her here was such a joy.
“I’m really privileged to have been here.”
The shop, which raises money for the national charity, opened its doors in August 1988.
Staff had wanted to hold the anniversary celebrations nearer the date, but the shop was due to be refitted in the autumn, so they thought they would delay the celebrations.
Ena Chadbourne, who started volunteering at the shop just two weeks after it opened, said the celebration, which took place yesterday, also celebrated the refit.
Mrs Chadbourne, who was formerly volunteer manager at the shop, told the Mail a lot had changed at the shop since she got involved.
“Things have changed no end, It’s a lot more professional now – there’s more paper work and more rules and regulations, like everything else. It was a lot more casual when I started.”
The 66-year-old, who lives in Netherseal, said she thought it was important for people to do their bit for the charity, because it does a lot of good. She suffered breast cancer herself 11 years ago.
There are around 20 volunteers who work in the shop at the moment, but Mrs Chadbourne said they were always on the lookout for more people to help.
Anyone interested should contact the shop on 01283 550398.