Smashed-up shop’s silver lining

Business as usual. Staff being positive at Cancer Research UK, Hemel Hempstead.
 They are, right to left: Sophie Pomroy, Janet Liddle, Kitty Walsh, Ellen Weymouth and Theresa McDonagh
Business as usual. Staff being positive at Cancer Research UK, Hemel Hempstead. They are, right to left: Sophie Pomroy, Janet Liddle, Kitty Walsh, Ellen Weymouth and Theresa McDonagh
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Volunteers at a popular charity shop have laughed in the face of small-minded vandals who damaged their shop window.

Staff at the Cancer Research UK shop in Marlowes, Hemel Hempstead, were dismayed to find their front window smashed when they arrived at work on Sunday, May 15.

But after surveying the damage – which will cost thousands to repair – shop manager Theresa McDonagh and her team decided to look on the bright side and make their customers laugh by creating tongue-in-cheek posters for the broken window.

Theresa, who has been working for the charity for 18 years, said: “Despite the damage, the sun is shining and we’re still open!

“Everyone is always upbeat here and we have made a few funny signs to make the best of a bad day.”

One reads: ‘Broken glass is like glitter – check out our glittery trinkets inside’, while the other says: ‘It’s only broken glass – we’ll pick up the pieces.”

Another hand-drawn poster shows a monkey cheekily poking his face out over the board which has been temporarily nailed to the window to stabilise it.

The cost of the repairs is estimated to be four figures. Theresa added: “Sadly, this means that resources that should be going towards research for cancer patients this week will now have to be offset against the cost of repairs.”

The shop has been established in the town for nearly 30 years and now the team have launched an appeal for donations towards the cost of repairing the broken pane.

Anyone who would like to contribute can pop into the shop and donate cash.

Theresa, who oversees a team of volunteers ranging in age from teenagers to those in their 80s, added: “We’d like to thank Herts Police and local Hemel CCTV for their support during the ongoing investigation.

“And also a huge thank you to our loyal customers for their continued support and patience during this time.

A spokesman for Herts Police said: “We were called at 9.51am on Sunday, May 15, to reports of a charity shop window being smashed.

“Anyone with any information should call 101 quoting D1/16/3441.”