By Mick Jensen
It’s the end of an era for the Ashburton Methodist Parish goodwill shop in Tinwald, with its doors set to close on June 8.
The shop is in the back half of the Methodist church on the corner at Jane Street and State Highway 1, but with the land now sold off, will soon be closed for good.
The opshop has been open two mornings a week for the last 29 years and has been staffed by dozens of volunteers over that time.
Daphne Whiting, alongside fellow volunteer Audrey Bruce, has lent a hand in the shop since the beginning, and says the closure “is the end of an era”.
Mrs Whiting said there had been an estimated 60 volunteers lending a hand on Tuesday and Thursday mornings over the years.
“We opened the shop 29 years ago because we saw a need in the community. The space we took over was unused at the time and we used it for the benefit of the community.”
There had been a good turnover of donated items, mainly clothing, and money raised had supported local charities and also been given to overseas relief projects.
Volunteers were getting older and it had become harder to fill the roster in recent years, said Mrs Whiting.
A special thanksgiving service would be held at the Methodist Church on Baring Square on June 11 to look back and to remember the goodwill shop, she said.