A beloved Benfleet charity store is celebrating its 40th anniversary having donated more than £1million to support children’s charities in its lifetime.

Benfleet charity store, 2nd Time Around, was formed in 1984, has been based in two locations over 40 years and has donated the whopping sum to children’s charity Unicef since its formation.

Managers and volunteers will be throwing a celebratory event on February 17, with Castle Point MP, Rebecca Harris, set to join the community to celebrate their incredible track record of helping Unicef improve the lives of children around the world.

Volunteer and committee member, Jacqueline Newman, 77, said: “2nd Time Around sends all its profits to Unicef.

“Last year we sent £85,000 and we couldn’t have achieved that without our wonderful customers and the donations we receive.

“We do fundraising events, which Covid did stop, but we have been getting back into the swing of it doing cake sales and other events with our small and loyal band of people.

“We are very proud to have made a difference and it is good to celebrate with our customers, we thank them all and it is such a lovely place.

“I am about to turn 78 and I love working there, it is such a happy place to be in and we all have so much fun.”

Ms Newman explained the store has a unique history with the shop having a special partnership with Unicef to fundraise on their behalf.

She said: “Unicef don’t have charity shops, it is not how they raise their funds, mostly they hold corporate events, marathons, and other events but our store was opened under their logo.

“They allow us to give all our profits to them and they are happy to let us use the Unicef logo on all that we do.

“Unicef has morphed into a fantastic organisation over 77 years and wherever there is a disaster, they are on the ground.”

“It’s been about 40 years, we have been run in two different locations in those years and eventually we knocked through the wall between the two stores, all that on top of having to pay a full rent,” Ms Newman said.