Pop-up shop helps kit out dozens of pupils in Telford

More than 40 children have been kitted out with free school uniforms that have been donated to a pop-up shop.

Kelly Middleton
Kelly Middleton

The scheme is the brainchild of Telford & Wrekin councillor Kelly Middleton who said she wanted to help prevent families who were struggling to cover the cost of school clothes from falling into debt following concerns that the bill for some secondaries costs around £300 per child.

She has opened a temporary outlet at Park Lane Centre, in Woodside, for parents to call in and collect second-hand items. There is no charge.

Councillor Middleton, Woodside ward representative, said: "Today 25 children came in. They were of all ages and attend from primary and secondary schools in the area.

"Since I opened the pop-up shop between 35 and 40 pupils have been assisted.

"I ran a similar project last year and more than 80 children received help. As a result I have repeated it this year with the help of Councillor Rae Evans."

She explained that following a request on Facebook generous families across the borough have been delivering unwanted and nearly new shirts, skirts, trousers, blazers, ties and shoes to three collection points in Telford.

These are Dawley Town Hall, The Hub, in Sutton Hill, and at Park Lane Centre.

"The appeal went out in July and we have been overwhelmed with items of clothing and inundated by parents coming in with their children for help. It came from an idea to stop parents from going into debt over the summer.

"Initially I set it up for families in Telford south, but I then received items from Thomas Telford and Holy Trinity schools so I distributed them to my fellow councillors serving those areas as they have people in their wards who needed them.

"Welfare service teams also refer families to the pop-up service as word soon got round that this service was on offer in the community," Councillor Middleton said.

Parents can visit the temporary pop-up at Park Lane Centre on Wednesdays and Fridays from 1pm to 3pm.

Free uniforms can also be picked up at Dawley Town Hall, in New Street, Dawley, via family projects operated there.

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