Irvine shop celebrates 25th birthday

15th May 2013

The Oxfam shop in Irvine has celebrated its 25th birthday with a drinks reception for customers and staff who helped raise funds for the international aid agency over the last quarter of a century.

Volunteer manager Lena Ross led the celebrations as it also marked the day she joined the shop when it opened in 1988.

Irvine's Oxfam branch was the first charity shop to open in the town and has remained in the same High Street premises ever since.

Lena, 82, is involved in the running of the shop seven days a week. It is fully staffed by volunteers, when it opened there were 31 volunteers but now that number is 10.

Lena said: "I've been here since the shop opened and I hope to stay involved as long as the shop is here. 25 years ago when it was announced that an Oxfam shop was going to open in Irvine, I went along to offer to volunteer to work two half-days a week.

"Before long I was filling in for others and now I work six days a week in the shop, a mix of half days and full days, and deal with paperwork on the seventh.

"It's a very busy job, there is always lots to do but I'd far rather be in the Oxfam shop, keeping busy and being useful than sitting at home.

"I've seen a lot of changes over the years but there are people who came into the shop during the first week that it opened who still remain customers to this day."