Manager tells of her disgust after charity shop trashed by vandals in Diss

Paula Reeder, manager of the East Coast Hospice charity shop, next to the vandalised exterior on Market Hill, Diss. Picture: Andrew Martin
Paula Reeder, manager of the East Coast Hospice charity shop, next to the vandalised exterior on Market Hill, Diss. Picture: Andrew Martin

The manager of a charity shop has told of her disgust after discovering it had been targeted by vandals last night.

The shop’s front windows have been plastered with eggs and a white powder, most likely flour, and the main door’s locks are glued – breaking the internal mechanism.

Egg and white powder, believed to be flour, plastered onto the front windows of East Coast Hospice charity shop on Market Hill, Diss. Picture: Andrew Martin.

Egg and white powder, believed to be flour, plastered onto the front windows of East Coast Hospice charity shop on Market Hill, Diss. Picture: Andrew Martin.

Paula Reeder has run the East Coast Hospice on Market Hill, Diss, for about one-and-a-half years. She said she had never known anything like this to happen before.

She added: “I wanted to cry, to be honest. Why do it to a charity shop, let alone anything else? It’s disgusting.

“It was someone who obviously knew what they were doing. But, to superglue my locks so I can’t get in means today I can’t open up, everybody is going seeing it and it is an absolute eyesore.”

The door’s letter box and steps were also damaged by glue.

To superglue my locks so I can’t get in means today I can’t open up, everybody is going seeing it, and it is an absolute eyesore

Paula Reeder

Ms Reeder said she couldn’t understand who could have caused the damage.

“I’ve not got any enemies”, she said. “But, they have gone to town and certainly knew what they were doing.”

Ms Reeder said she has received little support to clean up the damage – despite the shop’s damage being visible and posting calls for help on social media.

She said: “I have reported it to the police and received a crime number.

The front door's letterbox was also victim to the vandal's damage. Picture: Andrew Martin.

The front door's letterbox was also victim to the vandal's damage. Picture: Andrew Martin.

“If I could get into the building, I could get it cleaned up, but I am now stuck outside.

“I’m in talks with head office, so it looks like someone will have to come out and fix the lock. I’m staying put until something is done.”

The store, which opened in 2014, featured in the Diss Express in August after Ms Reeder started a petition to fight against the threat of impending closure.

Despite her efforts, the shop is due to close on January 6.

She added that no one else in the market town has been affected by vandals.

“There is no reason for anyone to just target one shop”, she said, “I don’t think it was just kids.

“It could have been a lot worse. If they had smashed the windows, they could have vandalised the inside too.”

The upset manager did gain a helping hand from a passing member of the public.

Chipping away at the glue-damaged door was local resident Katie Walsh.

She said she had stumbled across the damage after returning to the store to take a second look at an item she seen in the window display.

She added: “I saw the damage and I was horrified.

“I then waited until Paula arrived. I was surprised no one else has stopped to help.

“I hope this has a positive impact and people perhaps lend a hand and maybe even give a few donations before the shop closes.”

The charity shop is looking for local people to help clean its exterior and repair the damage. If you are interested, please go to the shop on 9 Market Hill, Diss.