New Hartlepool furniture store aims to help families coming out of lockdown
Families struggling financially including those affected by coronavirus can get a helping hand following the launch of a new community shop.
The Poolie Time Emporium got off to a busy start after opening in Victoria Road in Hartlepool town centre this week.
It sells quality furniture knock down prices and bric-a-brac, as well as a place where parents can get free school uniforms for their children.
The store is part of the Poolie Time Exchange community organisation’s takeover and revamp of Bovis House which is being turned into business accommodation after years of standing empty.
All of the stock has been donated by supporters and proceeds will be ploughed into further community work by Poolie Time Exchange.
Emporium manager Dave Hunter said: “It’s geared up so that once we pay the rent and bills whatever money we make goes back into community projects.
"One of the things we are looking at is opening a community kitchen where people can get food cheaply.
"The primary idea is to help people as they come out of lockdown where they might be struggling financially. They can come to us and get really cheap furniture to tide them over.”
Parents looking for new school uniforms can also choose from a selection in store at no charge.
And wall space has been given to aspiring young artists to display their work with a small percentage of any sales going to the community interest company.
Dave added: “It’s just part of how we are trying to develop the Poolie Time Exchange in the coming years.”
Staffed almost entirely by volunteers, the store, which opened on Monday, August 3, is stacked with furniture including sofas, tables and chairs.
The emporium also sells online through its Facebook page.
Dave said: “We’ve got a heck of a following with the food work we have been doing during lockdown.
"People have been incredibly supportive. We’ve got some beautiful stuff including the odd antique.
"The shop has got off to a fantastic start, far better than we could have anticipated.”
The shop is open Monday to Saturday from 9.30am-4.30pm.