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Mary Queen of Charity Shops

(46 Posts)
Sherbert37 Tue 02-Jun-09 22:35:25

Anyone watched it? I love Mary and her no nonsense approach to retailing. Some of the volunteers were amazing. Yuk at what they found in the bags.

fishie Tue 02-Jun-09 22:37:30

it is fascinating. so much also that the charity has signed up to it enthusiastically, but the shops dept is loathing her.

squeaver Tue 02-Jun-09 22:37:50

Yes I have a secret crush on Mary.

Funnily enough the most effective thing she can probably do to make people change their donating habits is make this programme. So good on her.

squeaver Tue 02-Jun-09 22:38:46

Yes fishie, dh and I were hooting at the poor Area Manager bloke. You could see the thought bubble: "how the hell did I get landed with this??"

squeaver Tue 02-Jun-09 22:39:19

Don't know why I felt sorry for him, actually. He was a plonker.

littlelamb Tue 02-Jun-09 22:39:31

Yes I watched it. I can't believe what some people donate shock I have a black bin bag full of toys I have cleared out today to take down tomorrow. I have sat and cleaned them all and made sure they are all together and made sure it's stuff that I would buy if it was in the shop. I love charity shopping but god they do have some tat. The best ones often are the ones run by old dears as you can really get some gems. But having such an old workforce is probably why there are so many that price anything vaguely 'trendy' at more than it cost new. I've thought of volunteering, but I'm not sure I could deal with peoples old pants

fishie Tue 02-Jun-09 22:40:22

mp "i want a shop manager"
shops bods "no, too expensive"
mp "it will pay for itself" (not sure it will on her sums)
charity "lo, you will have a shop manager"
mp: stomps all over eop and recruits.

squeaver Tue 02-Jun-09 22:44:22

Yes that bit was odd. I think it's just a ruse to get old Graham the job tbh.

changednam Wed 03-Jun-09 19:41:01

I thought she was a bit out of touch in some ways though - for instance the sandwich server might not have been her taste, but someone may have bought it to use as a bbq tongs or something.

My dad shops in charity shops and doesn't mind if the stuff he buys is unfashionable either - as long as it's good quality.

He's recently been sporting a leather jacket which would have done nicely on Ashes to Ashes.

Anyway back to Mary, I wonder if she's expecting to change the shop into a boutique with the latest fashions? It'll be interesting to watch next week.

And the area manager was definitely a plonker - I wondered if he might be an alcoholic - he used to work in the off licence trade and if he'd been so great at it, why wasn't he still there?

WhoDidThat Wed 03-Jun-09 19:42:51

The shop is on my High Street and a little while ago I noticed it had been radically redone and looked amazing, not at all like a charity shop. Inside it looked like a posh boutique ...... and quite spacious and empty.... but then most of the stock was still old tut but with one rail of gorgeous designer wear. There were some lovely fittings with shoes and bags beautifully displayed and then you had a look and realised they were just crappy and battered but they looked good from a distance. It was a bit odd really.

I don't know if it got picked up in the prog but the main reason why that charity shop is never going to do very well is that there are a total of 11 charity shop in that High Street and this is at the very end, furthest away from all the carparks too so it doesn't get the same passing trade. I love the charity shops and go for a rummage but generally find that I miss that one out because i can't be bothered going all the way down to that end.

Mind you, I bet it is heaving after all this publicity!

oysterpots Thu 04-Jun-09 15:49:57

Anyone know where the Kate-Moss-and-Madonna's-favourite cupcakes were from?

EffieGadsby Thu 04-Jun-09 16:11:59

I think they were Candy Cakes - they looked a lot like these anyway.

oysterpots Thu 04-Jun-09 16:15:31

Aha! That's them! They don't look so great on the website though... was going to steal decorating ideas wink

EffieGadsby Thu 04-Jun-09 18:22:40

They might have had another brand too, as they had some very dainty looking cupcakes in addition to the brightly coloured ones by Candy. I was thinking they might have also sold Primrose Bakery ones, who make much prettier cakes, and is supposedly popular with slebs.

squeaver Thu 04-Jun-09 21:13:08

The MIND charity shop near me has just had a refit and now has a sign up saying "this shop features on Mary Queen of Charity Shops". Also lots of signs saying "Donate; don't dump" which I think is quite a neat slogan (Mary's I'm sure).

Before it does appear, I'd like to put on record that I only ever hand in good quality items. No skanky pants from me!!

Lilyloo Thu 04-Jun-09 21:17:43

uuh did people really donate pants ?

squeaver Thu 04-Jun-09 22:00:21

Oh yes. Including ones with sanitary towels still in place.

Lilyloo Thu 04-Jun-09 22:04:23


dmo Thu 04-Jun-09 23:25:32

that stiff jacket shock dh and i are still laughing about it smile

and the people who go into charity shops just to change their underwear and leave their old stuff in the changing room shock

MargaretMountford Fri 05-Jun-09 16:31:52

have just watched this on iplayer - I love Mary Portas !
I also rather liked Brenda

etchasketch Tue 09-Jun-09 12:58:37

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Fimbo Tue 09-Jun-09 16:17:50

Oh I am so looking forward to his tonight, straight after the Holby wedding on BBC1 too.

My hairdresser is the spit of Mary.

auntyitaly Tue 09-Jun-09 16:30:45

Apols to all if I am hijacking this hagiography of our Blessed (definitely not a Virgin) Mary, but has anyone - on or off TV - yet made the point that charity shops are in crisis....

Donations are down because of the recession. The quality of donations has plummeted - more people ebay the good, saleable stuff (rise of unemployment etc), and the rest is, increasingly, very dead Primark (rise of discount chains).

And, as many of us here have pointed out, shoppers are getting wise to the oft-hilarious overcharging. Charging more for a withered Tesco T-shirt than it cost new four years ago cannot go unnoticed even by those who aren't as savvy as us lot for lon. How is Mary going to fix that?

ruddynorah Tue 09-Jun-09 16:36:45

love this show, also the i'm running sainsbury's one is good.

we give good stuff to charity shops. all dd's old clothes, good quality not the stained stuff, has gone to them. and we spend in them too. tons of books for dd. she got a swimming action man last saturday for 50p.

misdee Tue 09-Jun-09 16:42:12

do remember also, that clothes that arent suitable for selling, are sold to the ragman. the british heart foundation shops sell stuff to the ragman, inc old shoes. dh has a good laugh when he works there, as some things people donate are very odd, or skanky, but they just have a ragbin.

i will be volenteering there once dd4 is more settled and i can leave her longer than 20mins at a time.

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