Warm welcome for charity shop with a difference

S46081H13 Carolyn Shrosbree (right) and James Lowe (back) with work experience staff, left to right, Ashley Reynolds, 24, Ellis Ashe, 22, Richard, 23, and Leanne Marsh, 23

S46081H13 Carolyn Shrosbree (right) and James Lowe (back) with work experience staff, left to right, Ashley Reynolds, 24, Ellis Ashe, 22, Richard, 23, and Leanne Marsh, 23

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A CHARITY shop with a difference has been given a warm welcome in Shoreham.

The grand opening of SOLD, in High Street, was a huge success, with a constant stream of shoppers throughout the day.

Carolyn Shrosbree and her partner James Lowe set up SOLD, Shoreham Opportunities for Learning Disabilities, to offer work experience.

They felt worthwhile and realistic work experience opportunities for adults with learning disabilities would help them, as very few are able to find jobs.

Carolyn said: “The opening on November 9 was a huge success, despite the weather, which didn’t seem to dampen anybody’s spirits.

“There was a lovely gathering of potential punters at 10am to see Leanne Marsh from the SOLD team cut the ribbon, then lovely opening speeches from Emily Skipp and Abbie, supported by Richard and Leanne.”

As the shoppers entered, special guest singer Daniel Wakeford burst into song from the back of the shop.

He completed two ‘amazing’ sets and the in-house DJ played records from the shop’s stock for the rest of the day.

Carolyn said: “We made amazing sales from the selection of cool clothes, awesome accessories, brilliant books, dynamic DVDs, rocking records, fab furniture, retro a-go-go and viva las vintage.

“The whole day had a great inclusive atmosphere that hopefully set our shop apart from others and gave everyone a memorable SOLD experience.

“We think we made our mark on Shoreham High Street and that everyone could see we are most definitely a charity shop with a difference, making a difference.”

She said they used the event to make their objectives clear – to re-sell, re-cycle and re-think.

She added: “A huge thank-you to everyone who supported us, not only on the day but to everyone who helped make SOLD possible by volunteering their time, effort and expertise leading up to the big day, plus all the generous members of the public who have given such fantastic donations to set up our new project, without which none of this would have been possible.”

She said Leanne, Richard and Emily had been with them all the way on SOLD’s journey, and it would not have been possible without them.

Carolyn and James are respite carers under the Shared Lives Scheme, supporting adults with learning disabilities, and they wanted to use their experience to do more.

They will train individuals in a range of skills required for retail shop work, to help them find jobs.