9th August 2022

    Pilgrims shop goes the whole nine yards for a sale

    Pilgrims Hospices shop in New Romney will be holding a Yard Sale on Saturday 20 August between 10am and 3pm.

    The busy High Street shop will be open as usual, selling a range of clothing, bric-a-brac, books, toys, jewellery and more. At the rear of the shop, the courtyard will be open for customers to browse and purchase items that are not always readily available in store.

    The Yard Sale will include everything from power tools, hand tools, both preloved and vintage, to screws and nails, tool boxes, and ratchets, gardening equipment, comprising of lawn mowers, strimmers, plant pots, along with fishing gear and everything in between. There will also be plenty of crafting materials, puzzles, a tombola and a secret gift bag tub. Everything at affordable prices, and generating much-needed funds for local hospice care. 

    Julia Nailor, Pilgrims Hospices Shop Manager said: “We ran a very successful ‘Yard Sale’ last year, and customers have asked us to run the event again. The sale was one of our most successful days ever, with sales of more than £2,500 for the charity, we just didn’t stop all day! We hope our shoppers and supporters will help us do as well again this year.”

    The charity shop is run by a band of volunteers; Julia calls them her Pilgrims family.

    She added: “I appreciate each and every one of them, all with their different skill sets and qualities, this is a brilliant little gem of a shop and we are kept busy by our loyal local shoppers and often get a visit from holidaymakers and some even return to donate products to our shop.”

    “One of  the most unusual donations was a bright yellow cement mixer; it was snapped up quickly for a princely sum of £80 by a very happy purchaser.”

    New Romney shop volunteers:
    Jacqui Mears, Catherine Henwood, Fiona Bennett, Maureen Hicks and Mary Hyde


    Julia’s band of volunteers are busy bringing the Yard Sale to life; they’ve been collecting and preparing products for the event over the past few months, so there will be plenty to discover.

    Volunteer Jacqui Mears has been a team member for 12 years, originally sharing her time at Lydd and now at the New Romney shop on the High Street.

    She told us: “I only called in for a book.”

    She now volunteers her time to help three days each week to support the charity.

    Maureen Hicks who has also volunteered for 12 years said:

    “After retirement, I soon became bored. I knew someone who volunteered at the Pilgrims shop and I decided to offer my time too. My thoughts are that you never know when you might need Pilgrims’ support, so I’m very happy to be a Tuesday girl and part of Julia’s team of volunteers.”

    Volunteer Mary Hyde is the shop’s crafting expert, with an eye for craft materials and a champion knitter. Mary spends her spare time, when not volunteering at the shop, creating novelty knits as gifts and ensuring the shop dollies are fully dressed and ready for sale.

    She told us: “I’m looking forward to the Yard Sale, I’ve been picking out patterns, needles, fabrics and card-making materials from people’s kind donations, ready for our big event. There will be many items to choose from, and we even have a sewing machine and a dye cutting machine for sale too. I will be happy to share my knowledge and give advice to new crafters if I can on the day.”

    This is a very special role, and we all enjoy our little Pilgrims community, thanking those kind people who make donations and those who purchase; everyone is helping to make a difference to those in the community who need Pilgrims’ care.

    Julia Nailor, New Romney Shop Manager

    While the ladies were busy processing donations and sorting into relevant categories for pressing, sizing and ready for sale, they said that their oldest volunteer colleague was Vera who is 90+ years old, and helps on a Wednesday morning. Vera joined the Pilgrims volunteer team when the shop opened in 1994, and still enjoys meeting people and supporting the charity even if it is for less hours now. They all agreed as older ladies, it’s great to dedicate some time as a volunteer, they all made great friendships, and it helps to keep them all well and active.

    Although, having some strong gentlemen volunteers would really help with some of the lifting and carrying.

    Julia added: ”We do our best to have a diverse selection of clothing, bric-a-brac, jewellery, and toys and lots more. Especially during the school holidays, we have visits from lots of grandparents with their grandchildren selecting children’s books, games and puzzles to keep them amused.”

    Julia was a volunteer prior to being offered the role of shop manager, more than six years ago. She said: “I came in shopping with my daughter one day, and someone said ‘we could do with your help’. Before I knew it, I was shown around the shop and came back as a regular volunteer shortly after that!

    “As time went on, I was offered the opportunity to take up a paid role as a member of staff. I absolutely love my job but couldn’t do it without the support of my amazing volunteers.  

    “I don’t have a retail background, in fact I’ve done a number of different jobs over the years including office work and working with adults with learning disabilities before having a family, and then managing a pub with my brother. However, you do need bags of energy, an eye for detail, and a keen sense of what customers are looking for when shopping with us.

    “This is a very special role, and we all enjoy our little Pilgrims community, thanking those kind people who make donations and those who purchase; everyone is helping to make a difference to those in the community who need Pilgrims’ care.”

    The Yard Sale takes place on Saturday 20 August, 10:00-15:00 at our New Romney shop: 39 High Street, New Romney TN28 8BW

    Join our Facebook event!

    You can also join the New Romney shop’s Facebook group to keep up to date with the latest news.

    Would you like to volunteer in one of Pilgrims shops? Find out more at: 


    Pilgrims Hospices cares for thousands of local people each year, free of charge, during the most challenging time in their lives. They offer care and support in people’s own homes, in the community and in their inpatient units as well as running a 24-hour advice line.

    3rd August 2022

    Store50 brings second-hand, chic and eco-friendly fashion to Canterbury

    Store50 is Pilgrims Hospices’ newest shop, located at 50 St. Peter’s Street, Canterbury, in the heart of the city on its bustling high street.

    By nature, charity shops are known for stocking preloved goods; Store50 is taking that a step further, aiming to make second-hand fashion affordable, chic and eco-friendly at the same time.

    Opening on 4 August 2022, it will stock a diverse range of clothing for all, with a focus on “slow fashion” – an approach to producing clothing that advocates respect for people and the environment, often through reducing, reusing and recycling, rather than buying new items.

    The shop will particularly appeal to Canterbury’s thriving student population, who will find trendy threads to suit their wardrobes and their budgets.

    Store50 also features a dedicated denim section upstairs, a chill out area and vinyl record room downstairs, and a community board where people can leave messages about local news, events and business.

    Mandy Hawkett, Pilgrims Retail Area Manager shared: “We’ve been really keen to get this initiative off the ground for some time now, and have been searching for a suitable shop. We are delighted to have secured Store50. The team has pulled together fresh ideas with innovative and creative planning to give the shop something extraordinary for shoppers to enjoy. It looks like high end fashion with all the qualities of sustainability and so much more. We are also offering students a 10% discount, so it really is worth paying us a visit.”

    Amy Eldridge, Shop Manager, said: “We’re so excited to be launching this brand new charity shop for the quirky and diverse Canterbury community. We hope that by encouraging shoppers to thrift and be mindful about their purchases, we can help to build a more sustainable retail economy that benefits people and our planet. By shopping with us, you will help to stop items going to landfill, save precious pennies, and also contribute to Pilgrims’ vital services across east Kent – supporting our charity to provide compassionate care to patients and families where and when they need it the most.”

    Emily Bartlett and Demi Hale, Supervisors, added: “It’s a re-envisioning of a charity shop, set apart from the mainstream and what people are used to. We hope it will be popular across different age groups, not just students – it’s perfect for the everyday shopper, too!”

    Store50 is open 10:00-18:00 Monday-Saturday and 10:00-16:00 on Sundays.

    Tag us on social media using #pilgrimsshops and #store50thrifts.

    Do you have a passion for slow fashion and a love for all things local?

    Store50 is looking for volunteers to join its growing team, and they’d love to hear from you!

    To find out more and apply, click here, call Amy on 07983 131 627 or email amy.eldridge@pilgrimshospices.org.

    Pilgrims Hospices cares for thousands of local people each year, free of charge, during the most challenging time in their lives. They offer care and support in people’s own homes, in the community and in their inpatient units as well as running a 24-hour advice line.

    1st November 2021

    Charity shop team are proud to be recognised with Civic Pride Award

    The staff and volunteers at Pilgrims Hospices shop, on the High Street Ramsgate, have been awarded with a local Civic Pride Award from Thanet District Council.

    Not only do they bring an important shopping solution to the local community whilst driving funds for local hospice care, they ensure the store boundaries are as well maintained as their store and its contents.

    Alex Hancock, Pilgrims Retail Manager, said: “We are very proud to have been awarded the Civic Pride Award, we like our customers to feel that the Pilgrims store is truly part of the community shopping experience and that means everything from glancing into our windows as they pass by to browsing for a bargain inside.

    Alex added: “The appearance of our shop is really important to my team, we make regular checks around our perimeters to keep the building weed and litter free, we wouldn’t want it any other way.”

    The Ramsgate discount shop carries an extensive range of pre-loved ladies, gents and children’s clothing, along with furniture, electrical and household goods, books, games, DVDs and so much more. It’s difficult to leave the shop without a purchase!

    Alex has been the shop manager for the past two and a half years, and faced the challenges of lock-down due to the Covid pandemic followed by the staged re-opening for shoppers.

    We are very proud to have been awarded the Civic Pride Award, we like our customers to feel that the Pilgrims store is truly part of the community shopping experience

    Alex, Retail Manager

    “It was a tough time whilst our Pilgrims stores were closed, however, we took advantage of the time and refurbished a number of our shops and updated many others. It’s been wonderful to see people shopping again; about 20% of our customers are regulars, they know our names and we get to know what purchases they like to make.”

    Holly Brankin, shop supervisor told us: “The shop is busy currently with winter stock, we have a fantastic range of jackets and coats all at bargain prices. It’s great to see the college students coming in to purchase their winter woollies, hats, scarfs and accessories. As people become more conscious of climate change and environmental issues, recycling and upcycling clothing is more important than ever. The students are embracing change and getting really creative in our shop with their styling. We are here to help them do just that!

    “Our Christmas jumpers, party wear, gifts and decorations are selling fast, if you have items to donate to boost our stock, we would love to receive them.”

    When asked what was the strangest donation received? Alex told us they had been donated a brand new bath tub, which was sold almost immediately!

    The shop is busy currently with winter stock, we have a fantastic range of jackets and coats all at bargain prices.

    Holly, Supervisor

    “We are supported with donations from our wonderful local community, for which we would like to say a huge thank you, you are truly helping to make a difference to those people locally who need our help the most. There’s never a dull moment here, and I don’t need a gym membership, it really keeps me fit!” Alex added.

    You can support Pilgrims Hospices this season by purchasing from a range of Christmas cards in store or by purchasing a Charity Shop Gift Card. Pilgrims is the first charity in the country to accept a new multi-retailer gift card that can be used exclusively in charity shops.

    The Charity Shop Gift Card is backed by the Charity Retail Association (CRA), and is sold and accepted in Pilgrims Hospices’ 30 shops, helping to raise valuable funds for end of life care for thousands of people in east Kent.

    As well as boosting charity funds, money spent by cardholders will have a positive effect on the environment by supporting the growing second-hand revolution.

    If you have items that you would like to donate to Pilgrims Hospices shops, there’s a full list of shop details here.

    Pictured above:

    David Poole – Driver, Adrian Shale – Warehouse Operative, Norman – Volunteer, Holly Brankin – Supervisor, Alex Hancock – Retail Manager and Janet – Volunteer

    Pilgrims Hospices’ care is provided from three hospice sites in Ashford, Canterbury and Thanet as well as in patients’ own homes. To offer these services to patients and their families, the charity must raise £11 million each year from the generous local community.

    18th October 2019

    Uniquely Pilgrims fashion exhibition

    Canterbury College students upcycle for charity, they are bringing a new lease of life to charity shop donations after setting themselves an upcycling challenge in aid of Pilgrims Hospices.

    In partnership with Pilgrims Hospices, Level 1 & 3, Canterbury School of Visual Arts (CSVA) students have been adding their own creative flair to items and fabrics that need a bit of love and attention; they’ve been choosing their pieces from Pilgrims vintage shop in Burgate, Canterbury.

    During Canterbury Festival, the project will culminate in the Uniquely Pilgrims Fashion Exhibition at Pilgrims Hospices on Friday 1st November, where the students will be able to showcase their creations for viewing.

    We are very excited to be supporting Pilgrims Hospices.

    Sue Freeman, Canterbury College

    Both Canterbury College and Pilgrims Hospices would like to invite the general public to come along to this event and see the finished products. The Pilgrims retail team will also be there on the night so viewers will also have the chance to browse our vintage rails and purchase something special.

    Basing their creations on Kent Garden of England theme, the students led by college tutor, Sue Freeman have been experimenting with all things nature. From bees to birds to shrubbery and brambles, the students will be creating embellished and fabric manipulated accessories such as cushions, aprons, t-shirts and lots more.

    Sue Freeman, college tutor, said: “This has been a lovely project to do with L1 & L3 students.

    “We have been inspired by artists and designers who get their ideas from the natural world.

    “It has also been an opportunity to celebrate the wonderful abundance of fruit, vegetables and wildlife we have in Kent.

    “The students have been amazing with their responses and we are very excited to be supporting Pilgrims Hospices and hope that visitors enjoy it too.”

    Once the items have been showcased, they will be available to purchase either on the night or in Pilgrims Hospices vintage shop in Burgate.

    Funds raised through this project will support the work of Pilgrims Hospices to continue delivering specialist nursing care to patients living with incurable illness in east Kent.

    Event details:

    Friday 1st November7:30pm – 9:30pm

    Pilgrims Hospices, 56 London Road, Canterbury CT2 8JA

    Suggested donation of £5 on the door.

    Nibbles and drinks will be served on the night.

    If you or someone you know is coping with a life limiting illness and you think you may benefit from Pilgrims free services, talk to your GP or Healthcare Professional about your options or click here to read about our Wellbeing Programme.

    17th September 2018

    Shop window is dedicated to Pilgrims nurse Jo

    The Alice in Wonderland window display at Pilgrims Hospices’ shop on the High Street, Broadstairs was dedicated to the memory of Pilgrims nurse Jo Leadbeater, by her friend and Pilgrims volunteer Charlie Euden.

    Jo was diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumour in July last year. The mother of five and step mum of two was just 54 when she passed way in the care of Pilgrims Hospices early this year.

    Charlie has been dressing the windows every Friday at the Broadstairs shop for a number of years. Jenny Byrne, Pilgrims Shop Manager, said: “Charlie has a real eye for detail and creates some very imaginative displays.

    “Her display won our shop the Best Dressed Shop Window during the Dickens Week this year, and her fabulous Alice in Wonderland windows are a fitting tribute to her close friend and former Pilgrims nurse Jo.”

    Charlie has a real eye for detail and creates some very imaginative displays.

    Jenny Byrne, Pilgrims Hospices shop manager

    Charlie said: “I have always been a regular shopper in Pilgrims stores. I was asked by a member of staff if I’d like to volunteer about eight years ago. I started by selecting the toys for the window displays and have gone on to being more adventurous with some of the beautiful items that are generously donated to our shop.

    “Myself and fellow volunteers are all local and just want to do something to help support end-of-life care in our area. My mum was cared for at the Thanet hospice two years ago, which gave me first-hand experience of the amazing services they provide.

    Jo was a good friend, I thought it would be a nice way to honour her memory and remember what she gave to others.


    “Jo was a good friend and I thought it would be a nice way to honour her memory and remember what she gave to others.”

    In memory of Jo Leadbeater


    If you’d like to find out more about Pilgrims Hospices shops or how to become a shop volunteer, visit pilgrimshospices.org/shops.

    Each year Pilgrims supports hundreds of local people coping with a life limiting illness and their families. The charity offers a range of services: from end of life care given on its wards, to its Wellbeing and Social Programme supporting people after they are diagnosed to live well and stay independent.

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