Monday March 7, 2016
Singing charity is sprouting out …
The World’s FIRST all-singing charity shop opens in the centre of Keynsham on Monday March 21. The shop is on the Bath Road roundabout on the entrance to the town. It was formerly a greengrocers and, as the charity founder Grenville Jones says;
“From now on its Songs & Smiles, not Spuds & Sprouts!”
The shop with an authentic juke box in the window will be opened at 12 noon on March 21 by two very special local “Goldies” who live in Keynsham, 83 year old Joan Weaver and Margaret Allin (73).
The Golden-Oldies charity was started by Bath-based choir leader Grenville Jones in 2007 who took the first four fun daytime singalongs in sheltered housing community rooms himself. Grenville, through his choir work, recognised the social benefits of singing and is always keen to emphasise that his charities growing number of groups across England and Wales are NOT choirs but use fun singalongs to reach out to people who may be lonely or isolated.
Now in 2016 there are 35 freelance session leaders at 145 locations in South West England, Essex, Staffordshire, Yorkshire and across South Wales. Thousands attend including Afro Caribbean elders in Gloucester, Bristol and Cardiff. In Swindon the charity has been supported by Swindon Borough Council for the past 8 years. There is a session for Chinese older people and Asian elders attend a Bollywood session in central Bristol.
In Cardiff where Goldies Cymru is making great progress, popular daytime sessions even take place at four libraries working with Cardiff City Council.
The charity also leads an award-winning schools intergenerational programme.
Sessions will be taking place in the Keynsham shop alongside the books, bric-a-brac and clothes hangers on a regular basis using of course the popular Goldies song books featuring popular memory-evoking hits of the 50s onwards, including those made famous by Goldies patron Sir Cliff Richard.
The Charites first shop even has an authentic juke box in the window and it will be opened by two very special local Golden ladies. 83 year old Joan Weaver and her friend Margaret Allin live in the town and have hardly missed a Goldies session since the charity started one its first sessions back in January 2008. They will be the guests of honour who will cut the ribbon and declare the shop open on March 21.
Jacqui Cook is the Keynsham session leader and has been with the charity for over 8 years;
“Joan and Margaret are great fun, they help out with the teas at the sessions and attend many of our other Goldies events in and around the area.”
The first Goldies shop is a unique 50/50 partnership between the very small Golden-Oldies charity and the established Dorothy House Hospice Care. Goldies chair of trustees Mike Richardson explained;
“We were approached by Dorothy House, one of the best-loved charities in Bath and Wiltshire. They run many successful charity shops and we are benefitting from their retail experience in an arrangement that works for both of us. The Shop gives us a high street fundraising presence and we hope that this may lead to more Goldies’ shops in the future."
Goldies is looking for Volunteers in Keynsham who can spare an hour or two each week – anyone who can help is asked to call into the shop to discover more or call 01761 470006.
Press enquiries please to Grenville Jones on 0777 828 2934 or email firstname.lastname@example.org