Air ambulance charity superstore set to open in Melton

A large vacant Melton shop unit is to be converted into a charity superstore raising money for the Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland Air Ambulance (DLRAA).

Tuesday, 12th October 2021, 9:48 am
The former Countrywide premises in Scalford Road, Melton, which will shortly be converted into a new charity superstore in aid of the local air ambulance EMN-211210-091516001

The former Countrywide Farmers premises on Scalford Road, opposite the livestock market, has been empty for more than three years after the business went into administration.

But work is taking place to give the building ‘a substantial transformation’ ready for the new charity operation to open for business on November 19.

It will be turned into The Hanger superstore and sell both new and pre-loved homeware, furniture, clothing, electricals, living, and brand-new white goods.

The Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland Air Ambulance pictured in flight during another potentially lifesaving mission EMN-211210-091526001

Customers will also have access to a café, which will be open within store hours, offering a wide variety of hot and cold food and drinks and a selection of cakes, with free parking outside.

There will also be a drive-thru donation station, where people can drop off pre-loved items, as well as a collection and delivery service.

Proceeds from its stores are vital for the charity since it receives no funding from the government or National Lottery to meet the £1,700 cost of each rescue mission.

Gemma Ingram, head of retail for the air ambiulance charity, said: “The success of our store is vital as we rely solely on donations from the public and retail income to keep saving lives.

“We currently operate 59 shops and this latest venture in Melton Mowbray will be our fourth superstore.”

She added: “Shopping in a charity shop is experience shopping.

“Customers love the thrill of not knowing what they will find, and we want to make that experience last longer by offering a wider choice with a fantastic, safe, and friendly environment.”

A number of local jobs will be created when the new store opens and the charity is also appealing for volunteers to help staff it.

“We couldn’t operate our stores without the support and dedication of our volunteers so if anyone is interested we would ask them to please contact us,” explained Gemma.

People interested in volunteering should email [email protected] or call 0300 3045999 and specify Melton superstore as the location for doing it.

The charity, which provides leading pre-hospital emergency care across Leicestershire, earlier this year launched two brand new replacement helicopters.

DLRAA is crewed by critical care paramedics, doctors and pilots and attend an average of 10 rescue missions a day.

Within minutes, they can be on the ground delivering lifesaving care at road traffic collisions, sports events, and industrial accidents or for medical emergencies such as cardiac arrest, stroke or accidents in the home.

The air ambulance gives people the very best chance of survival and recovery. Its helicopter can fly at 185mph and carry the very latest lifesaving equipment.

The charity also provides critical care cars, which ensure valuable back-up for incidents close to the helicopter base or when the weather makes it too dangerous to fly.

It also enables the doctors and critical care paramedics to run a night car service so they are available to reach those in need 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.