This Blackpool charity is helping hard-up families with free school uniforms and urgently need donations

A Blackpool charity is running a clothing bank where families in need can get free uniforms and PE kit for all schools across Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre.

By Lucinda Herbert
Wednesday, 20th July 2022, 4:55 am

Home Start are asking for people to donate unwanted uniform items, so they can be passed on to other children in time for the autumn term.

Struggling parents can message the Blackpool, Fylde & Wyre branch of the charity, to request the items they need. They cover all schools in the area, and range from pre-school to secondary school.

Sue Utley, manager of the fundraising shop in St Annes, is coordinating the project. She said: “Tell us what you need and we will do our best to get hold of it. That includes PE kit, and also items like footwear and trousers in larger sizes too. We really need people to donate uniforms as demand is higher than ever.”

Sue Uttley, manager of Home Start fundraising shop in St Annes, is coordinating a school uniform bank to help struggling families in Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre

Sue has worked at the shop on St Albans Road for two and a half years, and has run the school uniform bank for the last four years.

She runs it through Facebook and has been flooded with requests since posting about the campaign on 13 July 2022.

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She has noticed more families needing help this year, including many working households and parents that had previously bought brand new clothing for their kids.

She added: “In some cases I get the same families coming back every year, who save up all year to buy the uniform but just need a little bit of help. As the prices keep going up along with everything else it’s making it even harder.

“Kitting one child out with the full uniform can cost anything up to £300. Someone told me their child’s primary school cardigan has just gone up to £27, how are struggling families supposed to afford that?”

There is extra demand for items for Waterloo Primary School, St Georges and Baines, but cover all primary and secondary schools across Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre.

People can drop off items at the shop at 135 St Albans Road, St Annes, send a message through Facebook, or call Sue on 07827876066.