Hand grenade found among post-lockdown charity donations

Oxfam shopImage copyright
PA Media

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Oxfam said the increase in donations had left some shops struggling for storage space

Horror film dolls and hand grenades have been given to charity shops which say donations have more than doubled since reopening after lockdown.

The World War One relic was handed in to a shop in West Yorkshire and had to be taken away by bomb disposal experts.

Mind said it had received 14,000 bags in its first week back – 8,000 more than during the same week last year.

Andrew Vale, from the charity, said given each bag is worth about £30 it was “a great problem to have”.

In May the Charity Retail Association warned charity shops may face a deluge of donations and one charity in Lincolnshire asked people to stop donating after receiving more than 50 tonnes.

But among the huge quantities of donations, charity shop workers have found some weird and wonderful items.

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Tom Pettinger

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Boroughgate, in Otley, had to be cordoned off after a WW1 hand grenade was found among a bag of donations

Oxfam volunteer Alex Leggat was manning the till at the shop in Otley, near Leeds, when his colleague brought down a plastic bag marked “brought back from school battlefield trip”.

“Inside was a hand grenade and a bullet,” said the 68-year-old. “I thought let’s take this out of the way so it’s not going to blow the customers up.”

The area around the shop was cordoned off and nearby buildings evacuated until an Army bomb disposal team was able to confirm it was a “harmless battlefield souvenir”.

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British Heart Foundation

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A pair of dolls from the horror film Child’s Play sold for £108

Elsewhere, British Heart Foundation said among its strangest post-lockdown donations were a pair of dolls from the Child’s Play horror films, which sold for £108.

In Thornaby, near Middlesbrough, the Mind shop discovered a Batman-themed teapot from 1989 which the branch manager said was already attracting interest from collectors.

A complete set of Anthony Trollope books donated to Oxfam in Market Harborough in Leicestershire also sold for £1,500 just days after being dropped off.

Mind said its staff had worked “tirelessly” to ensure shops were clean and safe before reopening and added donation levels to its shops had begun to come down.

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A 1989 batman themed teapot worth up to £100 was among the strange donations to the Mind shop in Thornaby

BBC News