Sinking feeling

22/04/11. John Devlin. Cumbernauld Special Needs Employment Unit charity shop 2 Ettrick Walk Town Centre. Shop faced with closure after receiving ?3k bill from Scottish Water.  cg
22/04/11. John Devlin. Cumbernauld Special Needs Employment Unit charity shop 2 Ettrick Walk Town Centre. Shop faced with closure after receiving ?3k bill from Scottish Water. cg

CUMBERNAULD’S oldest charity shop could soon be a thing of the past after staff were landed with a huge water bill they cannot pay.

The Special Needs Employment Unit in Ettrick Walk has existed in Cumbernauld for 40 years. It has taught generations of special needs adults to adjust to a working environment via key tasks such as cash handling, stock control and helping the public with their enquiries.

But the shop’s days could be numbered after a firm called Business Stream served staff with a bill for a whopping £3000. The company effectively pays Scottish Water wholesale for its supplies.

It is understood that the shop has twice failed to qualify for an exemption from the charge after new rules for charities were introduced by the Scottish Government – in a move which is sure to surprise anyone who thought that charity shops are exempt from these charges.

For the full story see this week’s Cumbernauld News.