ANOTHER shop in major city street will soon be empty

The Street Presence shop in Castle Meadow, Norwich

The Street Presence shop in Castle Meadow, Norwich - Credit: Sophie Wyllie

Shoppers heading down one of Norwich's busiest roads will soon be met with another unit gathering dust after a shop has confirmed it is moving on.

The unit in Castle Meadow has been leased to Norwich-based not-for profit company Street Presence since 2020.

However the team have since been told the site is up for rent.

Freya Rendell, 22, shop manager, confirmed the shop which sells clothes, furniture and jewellery, was looking for other premises in the city.

She added the date for when the team would leave Castle Meadow has not yet been confirmed.

Freya Rendell, shop manager of Street Presence in Castle Meadow, Norwich, with volunteer Brian Clark

Freya Rendell, shop manager of Street Presence in Castle Meadow, Norwich, with volunteer Brian Clark - Credit: Sophie Wyllie

She said: "We are here until we are getting another building. The shop is important because we don't get a lot of funding.

"We do what we can to help whoever we find. We want to help everybody."

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Set up in 2014, the company is made up of six medically-trained volunteers and one paid staff member who attend first aid emergencies before paramedics can arrive.

They also work to support homeless people.

Clothes inside the Street Presence shop in Castle Meadow, Norwich

Clothes inside the Street Presence shop in Castle Meadow, Norwich - Credit: Sophie Wyllie

Staff work through on-call shifts as well as offering specific support on Saturday nights through to Sunday mornings.

On these weekend shifts volunteers help everyone from party-goers who might have had too much to drink, to people who believe they are victims of spiking.

They also assist people suffering with their mental health.

During the day volunteers are equipped with monitors - similar to equipment paramedics use - and use their own cars to take people to hospital.

Miss Rendell added: "What we do is key. Without us on the streets it would put an increased strain on the ambulance.

"Over the years there would arguably have been a few more deaths on the streets if we were not here."

The manager, who used to be a chef, added the company had a few options for future shop locations and said it was crucial to how the company raised its funds.

Street Presence also works with other organisations that help vulnerable people and the homeless including the SOS bus, Safe Haven and Norfolk Police.

The shop manager said the company was looking for more volunteers and anyone interested should email recruitment@streetpresence.org and the 24/7 emergency number is 01603 340999.