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Swap Shop to help fund new church roof

A community swap shop is being organised in Stoke Newington to help raise funds for a new roof at St Mary’s Church.

The event takes place at The Old Church on Saturday April 29th and guests are invited to come along and swap good quality clothes and accessories. Admission costs £5.

Organiser Rafa Salti has good experience of pre-loved fashion, having previously managed the St Mary’s Living and Giving Shop in Islington.

She said: “The roof at St Mary’s has reached the end of its life span – it’s slowly falling apart and needs replacing. We need to carry out repairs as soon as possible so that St Mary's could continue to serve our community, and we continue to have our coffees on the lawn, shop for Christmas trees, and volunteer at the community garden. We’re applying for funding from English Heritage but will also need to meet some of the costs. It’ll cost more than a million pounds to fix.

“I love the idea of bringing people together to share things. The average person in Britain throws away 72 pieces of clothing a year so events like this are good for sustainability and reducing waste.”

Those wishing to join the event will need to bring their items of clothing or accessories (between three and five items, clean and in good condition) to a check in day at St Mary’s Church (the big one) on Sunday April 23rd or Tuesday April 25th. Items will be assessed and participants given a credit token based on their worth, which they can use when they return to choose clothes on April 29th.

There’ll be a café at the event in the Old Church serving sparkling wine, hot drinks and cakes. Any clothes left over will be passed on to local charity shops.

St Mary’s Church was designed by George Gilbert Scott and consecrated in June 1858. The building and The Old Church opposite were bombed during World War Two. It had extensive repair work during the 1950s.


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