Volunteers angry as charity shop shuts

VOLUNTEERS in Weston say they are saddened that their charity work has been 'spat on'. The Weston & Somerset Mercury has

VOLUNTEERS in Weston say they are saddened that their charity work has been 'spat on'.The Weston & Somerset Mercury has received letters from people working for Oxfam in West Street who are upset the shop will close.One volunteer wrote to the charity's head office and said: "What has happened is that hard work and success has been spat on."What is going on is absolutely disgusting and unfair."Another volunteer has written to Oxfam's offices in Oxford and said: "I was somewhat saddened to hear of the proposed closure of the Weston shop after 25 years."I have been a volunteer for 21 years and have very much enjoyed my time working in the shop."Oxfam as a presence in the town would be missed. The shops are a point of contact with the charity for most people and their means of donating funds and saleable items."Christine Duncan, the area manager for 26 Oxfam shops across Gloucester and the South West, said: "The fact is the shop is not making us any money."This year we have experimented selling online from that shop but that stock has to be driven all the way from Bridgwater. If it were not for these online sales the shop would have made no money at all. "The online business will be moved down to Bridgwater because it is a better economic decision for Oxfam. "We have had a meeting with the volunteers and they have all been given a chance to explain the situation. "If they want to give their time in Bridgwater their transport and lunch will be paid for. "You cannot keep a shop open just because the volunteers want to. We have to make sure a shop makes us money not costs us money. Hard decisions have to be made.

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