The Friends of Queen’s Medical Centre (QMC) is looking forward to reopening the doors to its shop on Derby Road in Lenton, after being closed for almost four months, as part of its phased reopening.

In the last couple of weeks staff have been busy preparing the Derby Road shop to reopen by adjusting the layout to meet social distancing requirements. Appropriate measures will be in place including social distancing markers, a one-way system around the shop and easy availability of hand sanitiser.

The Friends of QMC opened their second store, which is just a short walk from the hospital, in June of last year. Staff and volunteers are preparing for a deluge of donations after the lockdown wardrobe clear outs, however, due to COVID-19, rules in charity shops have changed and for now The Friends of QMC can only accept one bag at a time from people as all pre-loved items will be need to be quarantined for 72 hours to minimise risk. All clothes will be steam cleaned before they are put out for sale.

Nora  Bradley, Deputy Chair and Trustee of The Friends of QMC said: “A large proportion of the charity’s income is generated by our retail operations and having them closed for almost four months has had a huge financial impact. There was such an over-whelming appreciation of the NHS during lockdown and we are hoping people will continue to show their support by donating, visiting or volunteering at our shops. ”

The Friends of QMC was set up in 1978 and operates as an independent charity for the benefit of the staff, carers and patients of QMC. It funds various initiatives and equipment applied for by staff and last year saw an ECG machine and radios being donated to the EAL ward, a new fish tank gifted to the Maxillofacial X-Ray department, various refurbishments around the hospital and the continuation and growth of children’s entertainment. The Friends of QMC also supported various staff members to attend courses and receive training.

Specific items from the shop are donated to QMC’s discharge lounge enabling patients, many of whom arrive in emergency situations, to leave hospital in appropriate clothing, including coats in the winter. The charity regularly donates pyjamas to the Children’s Hospital and toiletry packs to specific areas around QMC.

As a charity, The Friends of QMC rely on the public’s generosity and are looking to recruit Trustees for their Board, people to help in their shops and fundraisers. If you think you can help, please contact The Friends of QMC.

The shop on Derby Road will be open at 10am on Monday and can be found at 357F Derby Road, Lenton, Nottingham, NG7 2DZ. Whilst the store in Keyworth is now open for business and can be found at 71 Wolds Drive, Keyworth, Nottingham, NG12 5FT.

Photo by Mike Petrucci on Unsplash