A spotlight on the Horsham East Street Shop

Volunteers and staff outside of Cancer Research UK's Horsham East Street Shop

This Volunteers’ Week, we wanted to give a special shout-out to the Horsham East Street volunteer team, as the shop recently celebrated a phenomenal 40 years of trading! 

Horsham East Street’s Shop Manager, Victoria, told us how essential volunteers are to the running of the shop:

“We really wouldn't be able to run our shop without our volunteers. They’re such an important part of the charity. I would like to say a big thank you to each and every one of my lovely volunteers - I’m so proud of them.” 

Two of these volunteers – Lillian and Jenny – both started volunteering in the shop when it first opened its doors as the Imperial Cancer Research Fund in 1983.  

Over the past 40 years, Lillian and Jenny have provided excellent customer service, acted as role models to newer volunteers, and have been brilliant ambassadors for Cancer Research UK. From Lillian’s expert fashion knowledge and window dressing to Jenny’s fabulous flower sales, the pair have been instrumental in helping the shop to raise an incredible £5.2 million! 


Lillian shared her story about why she started volunteering:

“In 1980, my 18-year-old daughter, Alison, had an ovary and a malignant teratoma removed, when she suddenly became very ill. Months of gruelling chemotherapy followed, and it was a difficult time for the whole family, and Alison. There was a little prospect of her having children in the future, we were warned. Our prayers were finally answered in 1983 when Alison was given the all clear. A new ‘cancer shop’ was about to open in Horsham's East Street and volunteers were urgently required."

Volunteering was my opportunity to say ‘thank you’ for my daughter’s life.

"Alison went on to marry and surprised her medical team, and everyone else, by giving birth to two daughters. She now also has two little granddaughters to spoil.” 


Jenny also told us what volunteering means to her:

My input helps Cancer Research UK to save lives.

"Each week I come in for four hours, and at the end of those, I always ask how much money we’ve taken in. It’s usually over £400, which is amazing! As well as helping make more money, I enjoy meeting new people, and spending time with Victoria, and our Assistant Manager, Janice. I’ve even got my granddaughter, Lucy, involved with volunteering each week in her gap year.” 


Thank you to Lillian, Jenny, and the entire Horsham East Street volunteer team for all the time you give. 

Share your story

If you'd be interested in sharing your volunteering experiences with the Volunteering Team, we'd love to hear from you! To find out more, please email volunteerstories@cancer.org.uk.