Hospice charity makes “difficult decision” to close Thetford shop

Opening of the St Nicholas Hospice Care shop in Riverside Walk, Thetford in 2014.

Opening of the St Nicholas Hospice Care shop in Riverside Walk, Thetford in 2014. - Credit: Archant

A charity is to close its Thetford shop this summer, ending a 20-year presence in the town.

St Nicholas Hospice Care has made the decision to close the shop in Riverside Walk when the lease on the building ends in June.

The Bury based charity is facing a loss of NHS funding of £250,000 per year from 2019, which it said had influenced the choice.

Kevin Clements, director of fundraising and marketing at St Nicholas Hospice Care, said it had been a 'very difficult decision'.

'Obviously we do not want to be closing any area of support for the hospice.

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'We have 11 shops and thankfully most of them generate a good level of funding, which all goes to the hospice to help us provide more care.

'Sadly the Thetford shop is not making much of a profit at the moment. If we did not break the lease, we would have been tied in there for another five years and may have started to lose money.

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'As a charity we cannot take that risk because of the people who rely on us.

'We are really thankful to all the volunteers at the shop and the manager for the hard work they have put in. This decision is no reflection on their work.'

David Willis, manager of the shop since it opened in 2014, said he and the volunteers received the news at the end of last year.

'It was kind of sudden and a shock. Obviously it is upsetting for all of us.

'The volunteers would like to stay within the hospice because they are passionate about what it does.'

St Nicholas Hospice Care has had a presence in Thetford for more than 20 years, occupying a shop in Bridge Street before moving to Riverside Walk.

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