Dereham PACT charity shop rises like a phoenix from the ashes
PUBLISHED: 16:48 17 May 2013 | UPDATED: 17:15 17 May 2013
© Archant Norfolk 2013
What a difference five months makes.
In December the People for Animal Care (PACT) charity was left devastated after its Dereham shop was destroyed by fire, causing the loss of £18,000 in revenue and stock.
Today the Phoenix rose from the ashes as the charity opened a new superstore just a short distance down the street.
Since the late night blaze in Norwich Street, staff and volunteers have worked tirelessly to refurbish the former Birds store.
Town mayor Linda Monument cut the ribbon to open the new shop, which has been nicknamed “Phoenix.”
Chris Rockingham, founder and chairman of trustees of the charity said: “We are delighted and it is a huge relief after the disaster with the last shop. It’s overwhelming the support the people of Dereham have given us.
“At the moment we are nursing between 1,200 and 1,500 animals at our Cranworth sanctuary. All these animals would have otherwise been put down. We hope to re-home the majority of the smaller and younger animals, but we can offer larger and older animals a home for life.” She added.
The opening of this shop takes the number of PACT shops in the region to seven. The shops provide vital revenue for the charities survival in the current economic climate.
PACT became a registered charity in March 1995 and aims to relieve the suffering of animals who require care and attention. Over the past 13 years 5,000 animals ranging from rats to sheep have been re-homed.
Mrs Monument said: “It’s amazing that they’ve been able to open so quickly. Shops like these are setting us an excellent example in re-cycling and re-using goods that are too good to throw out. I’m delighted to support them.”
The opening attracted a number of eager customers who have supported the charity for many years. Mother and daughter Ruth and Nicola Cordle from Mattishall, who have been volunteers with PACT, said: “It seems an excellent shop, We hope that lots of the animals will benefit from the sales here.”
The shop can take any sort of donation from large furniture to household ornaments. Donations can be taken to the shop, for re-homing enquiries contact PACT on 01362 820775.