Chesterfield town centre shop closes down

The former Age UK Derby and Derbyshire store.
The former Age UK Derby and Derbyshire store.

A Chesterfield charity shop has shut down.

The Age UK Derby and Derbyshire store on Stephenson Place is now closed to the public.

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Katy Pugh, chief executive of Age UK Derby and Derbyshire, told the Derbyshire Times: "It is a very difficult decision to close but as a charity we must abide by Charity Commission regulations that our efforts to generate unrestricted income to fund our charitable activities cannot cost more than we generate in income - so our charity shops must make a surplus.

"We have tried hard for the last few years to improve footfall in that area of Chesterield, increase donations and sales, and recruit more volunteers to keep the shop open seven days a week.

"Although we have benefitted from a very kind new landlord and the support of some volunteers to help run the shop, the costs of our rent, rates, utilities, part-time manager and the administration for the shop outstrip our income in Chesterfield and we have had to take the decision to close rather than be tied in for a longer period by our lease and risk losing valuable charity money.

"It has been an especially hard decision because we know that our volunteers enjoy their shifts each week and for many their support of the shop has been an important part of their health and well-being.

"Our staff will have the difficult experience of a redundancy and our regular customers will miss the social contact that all our shops provide for their communities.

"It is common for us to receive some lovely comments about our shops and teams and we know that communities are saddened to see another change in their local shopping centre.

"I can only say how sorry we are to say goodbye to our Chesterfield shop.

"We are working hard this week to recycle as much as possible of the shop stock and fittings and to leave the shop clean and ready to be marketed in the hope that a new tenant will soon be found to keep the shopping area open.

"We are working to ensure our remaining shops thrive and to try new ways of making the money we need to keep delivering our charitable activities."

Age UK Derby and Derbyshire is an independent charity working across Derbyshire and, although it works in partnership with Age UK, it are separate. Age UK has a charity shop near the market.