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Chance to buy Mr Bean’s girlfriend’s clothes at re-vamped charity shop

PUBLISHED: 16:00 18 August 2018 | UPDATED: 10:15 19 August 2018

Matilda Ziegler and John Ward re-open Magdalen Street Oxfam. PHOTO: Sophie Smith

Matilda Ziegler and John Ward re-open Magdalen Street Oxfam. PHOTO: Sophie Smith

Archant

An actress who starred as Donna Ludlow in Eastenders and Mr Bean’s girlfriend Irma Gobb re-opened a Norwich charity shop, and even donated some of her clothes.

Matilda Ziegler cut the ribbon at Oxfam on Magdalen Street on August 18, as dozens of people queued to see the re-vamped shop.

Among the store’s improvements are new lighting, floors, and feature wallpaper, largely donated and put up by its 86 volunteers.

The shop, the fifth most successful Oxfam store in the country and the sixth largest, has been closed for three weeks for the refurbishment.

Ms Ziegler, who is associate director of Norwich School, delighted volunteers by signing up for gift aid and donating items of clothing.

Oxfam on Magdalen Street. PHOTO: Sophie SmithOxfam on Magdalen Street. PHOTO: Sophie Smith

She said: “I’m incredibly proud of everything Oxfam does and I’m very much hoping this new store on Magdalen Street will be even more successful than it already has been.

“It’s got an amazing team of people serving a great community in the fabulous Magdalen Street, one of the best streets in Norwich.”

She was joined by John Ward, last year’s Norfolk County Council chairman and former mayor of Thorpe St Andrew, who has been volunteering for Oxfam for 15 years.

He said: “The store is everything Oxfam stands for, the excellent work it does all over the world.

John Ward, volunteer for 15 years at Oxfam on Magdalen Street. PHOTO: Sophie SmithJohn Ward, volunteer for 15 years at Oxfam on Magdalen Street. PHOTO: Sophie Smith

“I came here when I retired because I wanted to give back to the community.”

Customers on Saturday morning were treated to free Divine chocolate while browsing a selection of clothes, books, furniture, and for the first time, electronics.

Paul Spenser, from Norwich, said: “My wife and I have been coming regularly for 30 or 40 years I should think.

“The refurbishment is very nice, it makes it a lot more open.”

Matilda Ziegler signs up for gift aid at Oxfam on Magdalen Street. PHOTO: Sophie SmithMatilda Ziegler signs up for gift aid at Oxfam on Magdalen Street. PHOTO: Sophie Smith

Ben Carroll, shop manager, said: “We can already see the difference it’s made to the shop. The volunteers and staff were amazing.”

Ms Ziegler currently lives near Bungay, having previously lived in London, and then Suffolk.

She said: “I do now prefer Norfolk to Suffolk - I’m very much a Norfolk person, although I do love Felixstowe.

“I hope my children will always feel that Norfolk is their home.”

Oxfam on Magdalen Street. PHOTO: Sophie SmithOxfam on Magdalen Street. PHOTO: Sophie Smith

Staff at Oxfam on Magdalen Street with actress Matilda Ziegler. PHOTO: Sophie SmithStaff at Oxfam on Magdalen Street with actress Matilda Ziegler. PHOTO: Sophie Smith

People queue for the re-opening of Oxfam on Magdalen Street. PHOTO: Sophie SmithPeople queue for the re-opening of Oxfam on Magdalen Street. PHOTO: Sophie Smith

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