Last Updated: 9 June 2020

A phased reopening of our charity shops, starting with Minehead on Monday 15 June

During the ‘lockdown’ period many of us have no doubt used the time to have a ‘declutter’. Being confined to our homes has given people the time to get to the very backs of their wardrobes, into every corner of the attic, and even the nooks and crannies of the garage.

Therefore as lockdown restrictions ease, we at Brainwave expect and hope that there will be many items that our supporters and the public would like to donate to us – clothes, books, CDs, DVDs, and homewares, perhaps even more than we would have received if shops had been open since the end of March.

We are busy planning all the systems we need to support a phased reopening of our high street shops, starting with Minehead on 15 June. Initially, the Minehead shop will be open between the hours of 10am - 4pm, Monday - Friday. Customers are encouraged to pay by card, if possible. 

Just like the communities our shops are part of, each Brainwave shop is unique, and the safety measures needed to reopen each one will depend on the size of each shop and the volunteers available to run it.

We are following government advice and taking steps to create a safe environment. 

That means ensuring there is space for social distancing, that staff and volunteers have the personal protective equipment they need and that all surfaces, doors and equipment are regularly cleaned. It also means isolating donated items for 72 hours.

Our shops typically have just one or two paid staff members working with a team of volunteers. We rely on 200 volunteers to keep our shops open and their health and wellbeing is a priority. As many of them are vulnerable we are very aware of our responsibility to keep them safe. We would love to hear from you if you would like to volunteer with us once our shops reopen. You can register your interest online HERE

As shops reopen, we will be able to accept donations from the public. So, if you are getting ready to donate items to Brainwave, here is how you can help us:

  • Wherever possible, put clothes and textiles through the washing machine and wipe down solid surfaces.
  • Ask yourself, “Would someone I know buy this?” If the answer is “Yes”, we would love to receive it.
  • Call ahead when you are ready to donate, to check the best time for your local shop.
  • Stagger your donations, rather than bringing everything in at once. 
  • Remember to Gift Aid your donation, this scheme allows charities to claim 25 percent extra on the sale of your donations. To save time, you can download, print and fill out our Gift Aid Donor Form before your visit. Hand your completed form over to a member of our shop team and they'll issue you with a unique Donor Card for your future donations. 

Download our Gift Aid Donor Form