A charity shop in Oxford will celebrate 75 years of trade in the city this weekend.

In 1947 Broad Street became home to one of the UK’s first ever charity shops when a store was opened by the Oxford Committee for Famine Relief, which later became known as Oxfam. 

Since then, the network of Oxfam shops, selling donated second-hand products and an ethical new product range Sourced by Oxfam, has grown to over 500 as well as the Oxfam Online Shop.

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This weekend, the Broad Street store will celebrate its 75th anniversary.

Shop manager Dage Loranca Reyes, said: “This is a great moment to say thank you and celebrate. We have been open since December 1947, and we couldn’t have done this without support from our donors, volunteers and shoppers who believe that in order to overcome poverty, you need to be the change, and act. 

“Despite all the challenges presented by the pandemic, our shop stands strong and is a great example of what humankind can achieve when we work together to help others.” 

The celebration will kick off at 11am today (September 24), with the Lord Mayor of Oxford James Fry and Councillor Susanna Pressel giving speeches at 12pm, before things wrap up at 5pm. 

During the event, Oxfam’s handwashing stand will be on show, which has been used in refugee camps around the world, preventing diseases from spreading and stopping people from becoming sick. 

There will also be an Oxfam tank to look at, which is specifically designed for the safe storage of treated drinking water.  

Rachel Cosgrove-Pearce, Oxfam’s head of retail operations, said: “Oxfam Broad Street was the start of a movement that made charity shops a typical high street feature, each a centre of their local community where people meet to shop, browse, donate, and volunteer. 

“Without our shop managers, volunteers, and members of the public who kindly donate to Oxfam, none of our work helping people to beat poverty around the world would be possible. 

“It’s fantastic to see that after 75 years, charity shopping is stronger than ever. We know from research that more and more people are shopping second-hand due to a combination of things, such as saving money, but also to leave a lighter carbon footprint on the world.” 


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This story was written by Sophie Perry. She joined the team in 2021 as a digital reporter.

You can get in touch with her by emailing: sophie.perry@newsquest.co.uk

Follow her on Twitter @itssophieperry

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