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Your Worcester News completes charity dash for Worcester Food Bank
A NEW bargain shop opened in Worcester over the weekend – with festive music, balloons, sweets and even Father Christmas himself welcoming in the punters.
The 99p Store, part of a growing national chain, welcomed customers of all ages to its St Martin’s Quarter shop, selling a range of products from garden gnomes to toothpaste.
The shop has also boosted job opportunities for the city, creating about 30 roles.
Nazakat Fiaz, store manager, said: “I’m happy to have come to this store – having been a manager of Kidderminster’s shop – it’s exciting times for the company.
“We have a great location here in the city centre and being next to Asda will help us, plus customers have ready made parking options with their car park.
“It’s great that a lot of job opportunities for the people of Worcester have been created and I look forward to working with them.
“We are now hoping the customers pop in and have a good Christmas rush.”
Bhaskar Kunam, area manager of the expanding chain, said: “No one else in the high street can compete our range and quality of products.”
Several people, who were shopping at the store at the time, said they welcomed its arrival.
Becky Day, aged 26, of Worcester, said: “They’re good for the area and offer great bargains.
“I’ll be popping in a fair few times for sure.”
Marina Williams, of Grange Avenue, said: “I am glad it’s here and the fact it’s local to me. I shall be coming here, especially with Christmas coming up.”
If that wasn’t enough, the store also held a trolley dash for your Worcester News in aid of Worcester Food Bank on Saturday.
In a sprint around the store, which lasted 99 seconds, the store agreed to double the amount of products that were collected.
The record was 267 products, but only the Worcester dash came up short, managing goods only to a value of £189.95.
'I KNOW WHERE I WENT WRONG IN RECORD DASH BID'
LIKE every journalist, I’m slightly competitive to say the least; it’s in our DNA, so when I heard I had the opportunity to take part in a trolley dash that competitive nature came out in me once again.
My, and my news editor’s, first thought was ‘What’s the record?’
When we found out it was 267 products in 99 seconds, we fancied it.
The stage was set and the gauntlet had been thrown down.
I wanted that nationwide record for myself and for the Worcester News.
One final pep talk from my news editor, in which he said “I would love it if you break that record”, reminiscent of Kevin Keegan’s famous outburst when manager of Newcastle United , along with a quiet Friday night at home to ensure I was in best shape, and I was ready.
Unfortunately things didn’t go to plan, and I’m sad to report the record still remains unbroken.
The most frustrating thing is I know where I went wrong; I filled the trolley with big items first, so had little room or any other products.
I now know that tinned food is the key to success.
They still equate to the same value, so I should have started with the tinned food first and filled the trolley up, you can fit hundreds of tins in a trolley.
But I didn’t think it through and as the saying goes, ‘failing to prepare, is preparing to fail’.
I was ashamed to return to the office, having to face the colleagues I had let down - and losing is not something that sits well with me.
Unfortunately, I’m not sure when the next trolley dash opportunity will return.
I’m guessing it will not be for a long time, so I will have to continue to live with this failure for a while yet.
In all seriousness though, it was great fun and thanks are due to the guys at the 99p Store for allowing me to do it.
The fact they have agreed to double the takings is great news and all goes to Worcester Food Bank, an amazing cause, which will help so many people at what can be a very tough time of year.
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