SO what has the Community Chest done for us?

Many people ask what the Community Chest and the Emporium do with the money they make from running their two charity shops. I asked Mike Woods the Chiarman if he could give us a detailed response. Here it is….

The shops have been open for some time though both have been closed as required by the Government during the pandemic lockdowns. We have spent a large sum of money getting both shops retail ready, some £30,000 and counting. The pandemic closures also gave the Board of SNEDSL (To give it its proper and awful name) who run the shops a huge shock. As a result we have decided to retain a cash contingency that would see us through at least one more shock of the size of pandemic closure.

So what have we done? Here is a listing of stuff.I hope you agree it is pretty good so far. Id like you to know that w have just started and assuming a full years trading going forward new hope to take on some pretty large projects. More of which in another post.

Projects the Community Chest (SNEDSL) has worked on since founding
  • Developing, managing and paying for running the town web site.
  • Taking on the  “Who’s who” listing, print, distribution and online presence
  • Improvements in the Town’s built environment including;
    • Paying for improvements to the entrance to town from the Trailway
    • Paying for the large pictures at the banks
    • Organising planters and flowers around the town
    • Part paying for planters
    • Paying for Xmas tree lights and trees
    • Paying for trees and lighting to be erected outside every participating shop in the Town
    • Organising the new seating space by the museum
    • Supporting and part paying for planting of bulbs at the Trailway entrance
  • Paying for insurances for small events being run in the Town including for example, the Car Show, Craft Markets, Producer’s Markets.
  • Financing the Literary show marketing materials
  • Underwriting the Literary festivals costs including payment for many of its guest speaker fees
  • Yewstock work experience for four students
  • Paying for an office for Sturbiz
Other less obvious but in some ways more important benefits of the charity include;
  • Setting up a reuse, recycle, repurpose charity shop with minimal environmental footprint.
  • Creating a community focussed volunteer led organisation with up to 30 full nd part time volunteers
  • Creating 1.5 full time equivalent jobs in the town
  • Redeveloping and bringing one of the Town’s bank buildings back into use
  • Setting up the use of the waste food fridge projects bringing late date foodstuffs into town.
  • Hugely increasing footfall in the Town to the significant advantage of the Towns retailers by creating a well known shopping venue and supporting retail friendly events such as
    • Markets, The vintage car shows, The literary festival….
We have a number of projects in the pipeline, some of which may not see the light of day because of potential legal issues, including;
  1. Development of an online and hopefully a print replacement for UNITY
  2. Projects aimed at supporting the local school activities
  3. Further support mainly in the form of cash for improvements in the Town’s built environment ( New planter seating signage)
  4. Development of marketing materials for the town aimed at promoting its retail and tourism benefits to potential markets outside of the Town