Customers raise £1,000 for ‘unsung heroes’ who helped community through lockdown

Kumar Velummylum (front, left) with sons Udaesh and Rajeenth, and wife Jamuna; with customers outsid

Kumar Velummylum (front, left) with sons Udaesh and Rajeenth, and wife Jamuna; with customers outside the York Avenue Convenience Store in Hunstanton Picture: Chris Bishop - Credit: Archant

Customers, friends and neighbours gathered to pay tribute to the corner shop which has supported them through lockdown.

York Avenue Premier Convenience Store in Hunstanton has stayed open throughout the pandemic sourcing essentials, delivering to self-isolating customers and helping to keep an eye on those in need.

A large crowd gathered outside the shop on Saturday night to thank Kumar and Jamuna Velummylum, who have run the business for six years, after a collection to treat the couple and their two sons raised more than £1,000.

The fundraiser began after Hunstanton resident, Beverley Kait, wrote a letter to local magazine, Hunstanton Town and Around, saluting the Kumars for their hard work during the crisis.

The letter was spotted by a number of local people, who decided to start a collection for the family.

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Customer Chris Bishop told them: “You’ve been a lifeline for our community over the last few months. You’ve sourced supplies, you’ve helped us keep tabs on vulnerable neighbours, you’ve delivered to people in lockdown and I know you’ve supported needy customers in other ways.

“This is all despite the fact that Asian people are more at risk of serious complications if they do contract coronavirus.

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“I take my hat off to you for that, I truly do. You’re brave people who have been our unsung heroes throughout this, so we just thought we’d turn up tonight to say thanks.”

Mr Velummylum said: “We appreciate it, we really do. We’ve just all tried to stick together and help one another.”

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