Funding setback for project’s plan to extend its charity shop network

AN award-winning organisation has suffered a setback in its plans to open a charity shop in Todmorden.

The Ground Floor Project, based in Hebden Bridge, applied to Todmorden Town Council for £1,200 to cover setting up a new shop in the town and the first two months’ running costs.

But members of the town council’s amenities committee declined the application until it could be proved that the shop would be beneficial to Todmorden residents.

Peter Manning, a Ground Floor Project trustee, explained that the shop would be used for the sale of refurbished computer equipment to pensioners, people on fixed or low incomes and voluntary and charitable organisations.

“Our mission is to promote positive community action in the upper Calder Valley,” he said. “Our role is to create jobs for the long term unemployed and give people access to computer systems.

“We are trying to extend what we do in Hebden Bridge to Todmorden to spread the word and try to help people.

“This money would allow us to get started in Todmorden.”

Coun David O’Neill had concerns about the security of the shop, which was planned to be based at Todmorden Indoor Market.

He also said people may feel that another charity shop on top of the four existing ones would be too many.

Coun Frank McManus said: “The other charity shops in town may feel that we have favoured one shop over the others.”

He added: “Not all pensioners want anything to do with IT. Don’t assume that there will be the market for it that is too easily implied.”

Coun Diana Tremayne praised the project for providing job opportunities for unemployed young people in the upper Calder Valley.