The British Heart Foundation’s charity shops experienced their busiest day on record as they reopened their doors for the first time in nearly four months on Monday.
Despite some shops in Scotland and Northern Ireland remaining closed, the charity recorded more than £1m in sales.
Shops in England and Wales reopened on 12 April with safety measures in place including social distancing on the shop floor, screens at till points, and hand sanitiser available to customers.
The closure of the BHF’s network of charity shops and cancellation of fundraising events during the Covid-19 pandemic cut the charity’s net income in half, and research funding was reduced from £100m to £50m over the past year.
BHF retail director Allison Swaine-Hughes said: ‘We are absolutely thrilled that in our first day of reopening, our shops made an incredible £1m in sales, breaking the previous record for a day’s retail trading.”
“The past year has been the most difficult in the BHF’s 60-year history and ongoing shop closures have had a huge impact on our income, but as we approach our milestone birthday, we are incredibly touched by the continued loyalty, dedication and support from our staff, volunteers and customers alike.”
The BHF has encouraged the public to keep donating and shopping as the lockdown eases. Prospective donors who are not ready to shop in store can send in smaller items such as branded clothing, jewellery, vinyl records and cameras using the charity’s Freepost donation service.