ASOS samples on the racks of city charity shop amid thrifting boom

Anglia Square's Scope store is selling brand new ASOS items to shoppers. 

Anglia Square's Scope store is selling brand new ASOS items to shoppers. Inset: Scope's Peter Thompson - Credit: Scope/ Sophie Skyring

Bargain-bin hunters and thrift shoppers are hitting Norwich's charity shops hard - but they'll now find brand samples on the racks too. 

One such shop in Anglia Square, Scope, is now handling coveted items from ASOS - meaning it can charge charitable-minded shoppers a premium for the items.  

Peter Thompson, retail corporate partners lead at the charity, said: “Scope often receives new, quality donations directly from manufacturers and retailers to support our campaign for equality for disabled people and their families. 

The rails in Scope are bursting with unworn items from the popular online retailer. 

The rails in Scope are bursting with unworn items from the popular online retailer. - Credit: Sophie Skyring

“ASOS donate their sample garments which are not usually the items found on their website, the prices of these items reflect the quality of the donations.

“These lines are sold alongside the very generous donations from our local and loyal supporters.” 

Peter estimates that each bag of donations given to Scope by the general public accumulates to around £20 for the charity.  

The retail team at Scope want to encourage people to donate their old clothes to charity.  

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Peter said: “Sustainability is one of the most important issues we face, globally.   

ASOS items in the store are mostly £10 or over per item - though the items are new and unworn. 

ASOS items in the store are mostly £10 or over per item - though the items are new and unworn. - Credit: Sophie Skyring

“Our fantastic retail corporate partners are dedicated to playing their role in diverting textiles from landfill and are donating incredible quality, unsold and unworn stock to our charity shops.” 

This includes the brand new ASOS items seen in the Norwich store, including Topman and other well-known brands from the online retailer. 

“Our savvy customers are aware they have an important role to play too and we’re seeing stunning, pre-loved items donated to our shops that we can give a new home to,” Peter said. 

Meanwhile, other Norwich charity shops feel their prices haven’t increased in the recent thrifting boom.  

Some of the more well known brands that ASOS stock such as Topman were ticketed at £30 

Some of the more well known brands that ASOS stock such as Topman were ticketed at £30 - Credit: Sophie Skyring

Jane Flannery, senior regional director for the East at the British Heart Foundation said: “Prices in our high street shops across the UK have not changed for some time.” 

Though some items will be sold elsewhere to fetch a higher price, she explained.

Jane said: “Donated items are always assessed by our shop teams for quality and brand. Items that are likely to fetch a higher amount will be sold via our eBay or Depop shops, via auction, so customers can choose how much they wish to bid for them.” 

The Anglia Square store has so many items to choose from, including preloved and brand new items. 

The Anglia Square store has so many items to choose from, including preloved and brand new items. - Credit: Sophie Skyring