A charity shop and advice centre hit by a car in the early hours of Saturday morning is now planning to reopen tomorrow morning. The branch of Reading-based charity Christian Community Action (CCA) had hoped it would be business as usual today, despite seeing its frontage destroyed when a Peugeot 206 smashed into the building and its neighbour, Shazz Hair and Beauty. However, it turns out that the site, one of six the charity runs across the greater Reading area, is structurally unsafe and therefore has to remain closed.
But thanks to a team of volunteers working round the clock, the store is now able to reopen tomorrow.
Police are still investigating the circumstances surrounding the incident which occurred at 5.30am on Saturday, February 28 and we will update you as soon as we know more.
CCA is a charity that offers advice, support and help to people in need and has six shops/advice centres in the Reading area. Visitors can buy charity shop bargains and also receive help. Services include a listening ear, emergency food parcels and assistance with furniture or household goods for people on low incomes.
Ann-Marie Paterson, who heads up CCA, is delighted that the store can re-open so quickly despite the colossal damage sustained to the shop.
She said: “What a difference a day makes! We are back in our Oxford Road site today (at least behind the scenes) and are opening the shop as normal tomorrow. The Support Centre still needs to be cleaned up but we will be able to offer a service to clients in need.
“There is still lots to do but we are thankful that we can resume a near normal service.”
She added that the charity has received a host of messages of support and people want to help out financially as a result of the crash, for which CCA is grateful.
“CCA would like to take this opportunity to thank and publicly praise the incredible support we received from Reading Borough Council, the Fire Service, Thames Valley Police, HSS, Allder Glass, U Connect Electrical and of course all of our supporters and well wishers in the Oxford Road area,” Ann-Marie said.
“Christian Community Action would like to thank you all for the messages of support and concern that we have received over the weekend, following the accident on Saturday which involved our Oxford Road shop and Support Centre.
“We are also extremely grateful to Reading Borough Council and the emergency services for their swift attention to the situation.
“In response to those who have offered financial support in response to this incident, may we direct you to our website, www.ccam.org.uk, but also suggest that you visit our shops where the staff will be blessed to receive any financial gift that you are able to offer.
“We thank you for your prayerful response to these challenging times, and trust in God’s grace as we continue to serve the community of Reading.”
We’ll keep you updated.
To donate, or learn more, log on to www.ccam.org.uk