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Rising from the flames - Arson-hit charity shop back up and running

PUBLISHED: 08:24 13 February 2020 | UPDATED: 08:24 13 February 2020

The newly restocked Break charity shop in Hellesdon, which has re-opened after an arson attack. Picture: Andrew Morgan

The newly restocked Break charity shop in Hellesdon, which has re-opened after an arson attack. Picture: Andrew Morgan

Break

A charity shop which lost its Christmas trade after being ravaged by an arson attack last year is back open for business.

The newly restocked Break charity shop in Hellesdon, which has re-opened after an arson attack. Picture: Andrew MorganThe newly restocked Break charity shop in Hellesdon, which has re-opened after an arson attack. Picture: Andrew Morgan

The Break charity shop on Cromer Road in Hellesdon was rocked in September after a fire tore through its home in the former Firs pub.

The blaze resulted in the charity missing out on thousands of pounds of potential funds through stock lost, damage to the property and the shop's temporary closure.

However, after a four-month restoration project, the charity is now back open for business with repairs complete and new stock gathered from the community.

The store had its grand reopening on Wednesday, February 12, having started collecting donations a week before.

The newly restocked Break charity shop in Hellesdon, which has re-opened after an arson attack. Picture: Andrew MorganThe newly restocked Break charity shop in Hellesdon, which has re-opened after an arson attack. Picture: Andrew Morgan

Member of the community made sure the shop was freshly stocked with clothes, collectibles and bric-a-brac, as loyal customers returned through the doors once more.

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A spokesman for the shop said: "What was great to see was the volume of items that have been donated from the local community who have really rallied around to support Break by coming in with donations in the last few weeks, and in fact some people have been storing items while the shop has been closed, ready to bring in to us.

"The shop was also nicely busy with many regulars coming back to the shop."

The Break chaity shop, on Cromer Road in Helleson, could be closed for months following a fire which the police are treating as arson. Picture: Neil DidsburyThe Break chaity shop, on Cromer Road in Helleson, could be closed for months following a fire which the police are treating as arson. Picture: Neil Didsbury

Lesley Leigh, Break's retail business manager, previously said: "This has been a horrible time for both staff and locals to lose such a lovely shop that's used by the community to help Break support its young people."

The reopening comes just a few weeks after the charity unveiled its latest sculpture trail - GoGoDiscover T-Rex - which will see a score of brightly coloured Tyrannosaurus Rex statutes form a trail across the city later this year.

Simon Clarke, 51, has been charged with two counts of arson relating to the shop.

Clarke, of Lower Clarence Road, Norwich, was remanded into custody and is due to appear at Norwich Crown Court on Monday, February 17.

Volunteers at the Break chaity shop, on Cromer Road in Helleson, which could be closed for months following a fire which the police are treating as arson. Picture: Neil DidsburyVolunteers at the Break chaity shop, on Cromer Road in Helleson, which could be closed for months following a fire which the police are treating as arson. Picture: Neil Didsbury


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