A VILLAGE welcomed its first charity shop as it was opened by the new mayor of Fareham.
The Rowans Hospice is opening five new charity shops in the Portsmouth area.
And yesterday its Titchfield shop was opened by the new mayor, Cllr Susan Bayford. Scores of shoppers gathered to watch Cllr Bayford cut the ribbon – and then rushed in to grab a bargain.
The Rowans took over the premises on Church Street on Tuesday and a group of 21 volunteers rallied round to get it ready for the opening.
Store manager Helen Jones, from Waterlooville, has been the assistant manager of The Rowans Hospice shop in Petersfield for the last eight years.
She said: ‘The Rowans is really well supported and it’s so well respected. I’m very proud to be here. I hope it will thrive and be part of the community. We’re honoured to be part of Titchfield.’
Villager Sheila Cawte, 73, is hoping to volunteer in the shop two days a week.
She said: ‘I have recently lost my husband and we had The Rowans hospice at home service. They were absolutely wonderful. It’s good to give something back. If somebody else can benefit from the same service that we had, then it’s a good thing.’
Sheila’s husband John died at the end of March, aged 73. The Rowans Hospice’s a home service, has been funded through the Dorothy’s Dream campaign.
The Rowans is dedicated to improving the lives of people with cancer and life-limiting illnesses.
The Rowans Hospice honorary chairman Ian Young said: ‘We are delighted to be here in Titchfield.
‘It’s such a lovely, traditional village and such a lovely, spacious shop.’
The opening of the shop was one of Cllr Bayford’s first formal duties since she became mayor on Thursday.
She said: ‘I wish them every success. I am sure they will do very well.
‘If I have any spare clothes then I will make sure I donate them here.’
The shop will sell clothes, bric-a-brac, books and toys. It will open 9.30am until 4.30pm, Monday to Saturday.
The Rowans Hospice is on target to have 20 charity shops by the end of the year, with stores opening in Havant and North End today.