Margate’s ‘Our Shop’ to close until CCTV and security in place following racial abuse incident

Our Shop is run by volunteers Photo Caroline Dyal

UPDATE: Our Shop volunteers have decided to reopen after all, saying they ‘won’t be beaten.’ CCTV is still due to be installed.

A social food club shop in Margate will stay closed until CCTV and a security guard are put in place after racial abuse was hurled at a volunteer and a large group turned up and created a disturbance outside.

Our Shop, run by volunteers with Our Kitchen on the Isle of Thanet, offers goods at drastically reduced prices, meal kits, chances to learn new recipes, useful information sessions on nutrition and opportunities to taste new products.

Food is provided by organisations and groups including FareShare – which takes  good quality surplus from right across the food industry and redistributes to charities- Kent Gleaners and Windmill Community Gardens allotments. The scheme is backed by county councillor Barry Lewis.

The shops in Margate and another in Ramsgate are run by volunteers, headed up by Sharon Goodyer.

Our Shop staff say yesterday (July 15) as the Margate store was due to close a woman customer became angry after learning there were no carrier bags. Volunteers say she then began to shout racial abuse at the manager.

Sharon Goodyer Photo John Horton

Sharon said: “It’s just awful. A woman came in for her shop near the end of the day and then started to kick off because there were no carrier bags.

“The woman got irate and was asked to leave and then got out her phone took pictures of my manager and a volunteer and sent it to her friends/family. They then turned up so there was a group of jeering people outside.

“My manager is a wonderful, young, black woman who was then subjected  to racial abuse. I want to make it clear we were in the right and will be prosecuting. We will also be doing some banning.

“We will not be opening at Margate until I am sure my team is protected and my customers are safe. We will be putting in CCTV and security and the people involved are banned for good.

“My manager is an absolutely wonderful woman, I am livid about this.”

Sharon says since the incident there has been much support from the community for Our Shop and her manager.

Investigation

A Kent Police spokesperson said: “Kent Police was contacted at 3.05pm following a report that a member of staff at a business in Margate High Street had been racially abused by a woman.

“It was then reported that others had arrived at the scene and made further abusive comments.

“Officers attended and an investigation into the incident is ongoing.”

Anyone who witnessed what happened or has any information which may assist is urged to call Kent Police on 01843 222289, quoting reference 46/124936/21.

You can also report anonymously to Crimestoppers in Kent by calling 0800 555 111 or using their anonymous online form.

22 Comments

  1. So,some lowlife gets irrate because they do not provide a bag for her to put her drastically reduced price food in!
    She can afford a smartphone to take photos and phone her ferral vermin,but cannot afford to pay for food or a plastic bag.
    There is no pleasing these unwashed underclass.

    • You sure hit the nail on the head there Eric.The same entitled vermin that I have seen sitting in McDonalds spending their benefits.Buying ready made sandwiches in Tescos for £3. They smoke and drink their lazy fat arses away.

      • This world is getting worse never used to be this bad especially when people are volunteering to help others and they get threatened by thugs with no jobs and to much time on there hands. Probably need cctv and security guards with dogs the way the situation is in Thanet at the moment as going to get a lot worse when the summer holidays start. Hopefully the volunteering people will recover from this despicable act of anti social behaviour.

          • Marva is right when she said, “I think society used to be a lot worse, even as recently as the 19th century”. In 200 years Margate has not progressed and we still attack people for little reason. No hope for future life then.

          • It doesn’t matter what Mark Lawrence is referring to, his statement is still a mistaken generalization. Modern Britain is better in many ways than, for example,mid-20th century Britain. It is also worse in some ways. Still better for most people in Britain than the previous centuries though.

    • Unfortunately this is typical of the “me, me, me” brigade, the “I want, I want, I want” brigade and the “I am entitled” and the “it’s my right” brigade.

      They have been pandered to for too long and now resort to intimidation on a grand scale if not provided with a free carrier bag in which to carry home their reduced price food.

      Clearly this charitable outlet is no longer financially viable if it has to bay out for the installation of CCTV and the employment of a SIA security guard to keep the clientele in order.

  2. Some people it’s sad to say are beyond help. Take take take. Doubt they’ve done anything in their lives to help somebody in need
    Lock them up.

    • Why stop at locking them up? Why not execute them, saves time, money, and solves the problem with each individual permanently. Or, we could make an attempt to find out why they behave like this in the first place, rather than stampede towards the punitive based on your unsubstantiated sweeping generalizations of ”some people” – I know which path I would prefer society to take.

  3. The manager is a lovely lady and would help anyone if she could. She is the perfect woman to do this job and I am appalled that anyone should go in there and be racially abusive to volunteers over a carrier bag for goodness sake. You have to be registered and sign in when you shop there so hopefully they have a name and address for the police to go and arrest this woman although I don’t hold out much hope with the police as they have handled cases of anti-social behaviour and hate crimes terribly in Thanet recently.
    I hope the manager returns as soon as she can.

    • Don’t hold your breath, it’ll be a case of ones word against another in the absence of cctv etc. It ‘ll most likely end up as a “quiet word in the ear” situation.
      Personally i’m a little perturbed at the willingness of the shop to reveal details of their manager (skin colour) but no efforts to describe the alledged offender.
      Surely you either describe both or none, to not do so rather smacks of attention seeking.

  4. A few people are quite dreadful. I hope it all comes together quickly for you Sharon. Thanks for what you do.

  5. We are up and running again this morning. Our response has been to make the stock even better!

  6. scumbags rule police cant do jack now and they know it if they ever get near a court they are more likley to get a holiday than a sanctionj

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