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The Rise of the Charity Shop

Charity shopping is the new way to shop. With the cost-of-living crisis hitting everyone hard, there is no better way to find brilliant deals than in a local charity shop. From big name brands to funky shirts for a night out, charity shops have it all and are a great way to save money and the environment. Most towns and cities in the UK have a couple of charity shops, but if you are not sure where they are you can look on Find local Charity Shops by postcode or town. Charity Retail Association or simply put into google ‘Nearest charity shop to me’ and it will show you where to find the nearest one.

With the price of clothing skyrocketing, it’s no wonder that charity shopping has become such a hit. It has even made it onto our TV screens (Embracing pre-loved fashion with the Charity Shop Girl! | This Morning (itv.com)). I am an avid charity shopper and I always have been. Of course, it is trendy to charity shop now, especially for people my age, but I think it is more important than ever. Not only does it save you money, but it also helps the environment. Buying second hand clothes prevents fast fashion damaging the environment and reduces landfill which is becoming an increasingly worrying situation for our planet. It will also save you money, and the money you do spend will go to a great cause.

Top tips

It is always important to have a good rummage to find the best deals. If it is oversized jumpers and shirts that you are looking for, head towards the men’s section. Most often than not, there will be some branded goodies hidden on the rails. Usually, charity shops will be set out with signs pointing to the different sections of the store which is very helpful if you are looking for a specific item.

You often find that charity shops are brilliant for sportswear. With sports shorts and tops continuing to increase in price, local charity shops often receive a lot of these items so make sure you thoroughly check the rails when you next visit one. My experience with charity shopping has taught me that you are more likely to find shorts and t-shirts than you are joggers and hoodies. I think this is because the latter items sell out faster, so if you can go early to the charity shops then do!

If like me, you live in a town with multiple charity shops, I would highly recommend going into most, if not all, of them on your next shopping trip. I have come to favour some over others, just because they have more of the type of clothes that I wear. This is not to say that the other charity shops aren’t as good, I just gravitate towards those which I know have my style of clothing. The more charity shops you go in, the more items you are bound to find.

Our Contribution: The Matthew Hackney Foundation and Pretty & Pre-Loved

It is important to us that we promote a greener future for the children in our local area and, as some of you will know, The Matthew Hackney Foundation has a flagship fundraising shop in Byfleet (21 High Road, Byfleet, KT14 7PG) called ‘Pretty & Pre-loved’. Our shop is open Mondays to Saturdays, 10amtill 4pm and we welcome everyone for a browse and a chat. My wonderful parents set up the shop in 2021 and so far, it has made a wonderful impact on fundraising for the charity. Our wonderful volunteers and staff work tirelessly to keep the shop running smoothly. We have some amazing clothes in store that have all been kindly donated and we cannot thank you enough for all the lovely items that we receive. All the money that we raise goes directly into helping us provide counselling for children in schools. Every time someone makes a purchase, you are benefiting the life of a child or adult in your local area, so please pop by and say hello if you can.

As someone who loves charity shopping and donating towards life-changing causes, Pretty & Pre-Loved is one of the best shops I have been into (and no I’m not being forced to say this). It’s beautiful décor and inviting shop front creates a relaxed and peaceful environment for a shopper. Not to mention the friendly and kind staff behind the desk. Everything is perfectly priced and affordable (which is brilliant for a university student like me!). I have multiple pieces of clothing that I have bought from Pretty & Pre-Loved and I love them (my friends still ask me where I got them from!). I bought a few pairs of Levi’s jeans and even a Ralph Lauren shirt!

We hope to see you at Pretty & Pre-Loved soon!

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