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YMCA charity shop in Park Mall, Ashford, to sell all items for £1 amid cost of living crisis


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A charity shop in Ashford has reduced the price of all items to £1 in a permanent move to help families with the rising cost of living.

Everything from wedding dresses, designer clothes and football kits have been reduced at the YMCA store in Park Mall.

Volunteers Gemma Johnston, Chris Raggett and Kelly Hughes say the new scheme has been a success
Volunteers Gemma Johnston, Chris Raggett and Kelly Hughes say the new scheme has been a success

The only thing that is not included in the deal is handcrafted items made by volunteers.

Lisa Barden, store manager, explains the decision was made to help families cut costs when the price of everything else is rising.

She said: "It's cost effective for the company because this is going to be an end of line shop. Other shops have tried it and it has worked.

"Everything is coming down from London. Once it's been in those shops for seven days or so, it comes here to be sold for £1.

"That doesn't necessarily mean it's rubbish stock, it just means it hasn't sold.

"We've had big brand names like Nike trainers, converse tops and I saw a Karen Millen jumper yesterday and all will continue to be £1.

"With electricity and gas going up and all the doom and gloom, we just decided that maybe this would be something to lift peoples spirits.

"I'm going to adamantly keep it this way because I feel Ashford needs it and it showed in the sales yesterday and it cheered everybody up.

"A lady bought six Adidas football kits for her son and she said it would have been more than £100 elsewhere but it only cost her £6."

The new scheme was trialled on Thursday but officially launched on Friday.

Wedding dresses and designer goods are included in the sale
Wedding dresses and designer goods are included in the sale

Despite the changes, the shop continues to be open for donations.

YMCA claims to be the oldest and largest youth charity in the world and helps young people with a variety of needs across England and Wales.

It also has two other stores in Ashford - one in County Square and another in Brookfield Court - although the sale only applies to the shop in Park Mall.

The store in Brookfield Court instead has a 1, 2, 3 policy which means items range between £1 and £3 in a bid to keep costs down.

The shop in County Square, next to Poundland, filled the former BrightHouse unit last spring.

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