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College students takeover charity shops in Bury

PUBLISHED: 11:32 27 February 2019 | UPDATED: 17:22 27 February 2019

Business students from West Suffolk College took part in a charity shop 'takeover' Picture: DANNY HEWITT

Business students from West Suffolk College took part in a charity shop 'takeover' Picture: DANNY HEWITT

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Business students from West Suffolk College took part in a charity shop takeover project in Bury St Edmunds with the aim of boosting store takings.

Students outside the Cancer Research shop in Bury Picture: DANNY HEWITTStudents outside the Cancer Research shop in Bury Picture: DANNY HEWITT

The students staged a takeover at seven shops in the town, and were tasked with coming up with ideas on how the stores could make more money, with the main focus on visual merchandising.

The participating shops in the project, which took place on February 14 and 15, were EACH, St Nicholas Hospice Care, Cancer Research UK, The Salvation Army, Mind, RSPCA and Age UK Suffolk.

Nina Hart, business management tutor at the college, said: “The ability to put theoretical skills into practice is an invaluable opportunity, allowing the learners to experience the ongoing challenges retailers and more specifically charity shops face.

“These skills will give the students a fantastic baseline for future endeavours, including programmes such as business management at The University of Suffolk, where industry lead projects are a fundamental focus.”

Molly Root, Age UK’s store manager, said: ‘The students were a fantastic help, they got to work right away on the first day which happened to be a delivery day so there was a lot to be done.

“They maintained professionalism and were extremely polite throughout. A credit to West Suffolk College.”

Victoria Irving, 19, from Risby, who was part of the team placed with Cancer Research UK, said: ‘It has been great to be a part of this live project where we can see the challenges these retail workers face.

“It has also been really humbling to see how charity shops give back to the community in such a positive way.”

The winning team will be announced after the charity shops have finalised reports on the takings from the two days.

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