Charities fall victim to floods

Oxfam estimates that it will lose tens of thousands of pounds worth of trade after 30 of its shops were affected by Friday's floods.

At least eight of those were still closed yesterday, including three of its busiest stores in central London.

Barney Tallack, Oxfam’s deputy trading director, said the charity was still assessing the damage.

“Donated items will have unfortunately been damaged and Oxfam stands to lose tens of thousands of pounds in lost trade,” he said. “As always, volunteers have been doing their best to keep the shops open, but we’re going to need more donations because of what’s happened so that we can continue to fund our work fighting global poverty.”

Six shops in North Yorkshire were closed as a result of the floods last month. The Oxfam Shop in Pocklington, just outside Hull, remains closed and repairs will not be completed for another two weeks.

Age Concern England has also taken the brunt of the adverse weather conditions. The basement at the charity’s head office in Norbury, south London, flooded on Friday.

Most of its technical and electrical equipment has been affected, forcing most of the 350 staff employed there to work from home. The charity is able to carry out “emergency work” only and doesn’t expect to resume normal service for a couple of weeks.

“What matters most is our services for the elderly,” said a spokesman. “Fortunately, our phoneline has not been affected as it is based in Ashburton in Devon.

“Our other Age Concerns around the country, which are all independent charities, will continue to operate.”

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