no-one should be without a bed

The stylish modernist lobby of the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill is adorned with a striking upcycled Christmas tree this Winter. Bearing the message “no-one should be without a comfy bed”, the bedslat tree is the work of local charity Hastings & Rother Furniture Service.

The plinth doubles as a collecting pot for donations to help the charity provide essential furniture for local families in desperate need.

“We’ve seen families that have had to pile old cardboard on the floor for their kids to sleep on, and been really proud to deliver affordable reused beds for them.” says Pea Crabtree, the creative behind the tree and a full-time worker for HFS.

Pea Crabtree

The tree is made from broken and bowed bed-slats we can’t reuse. We hope it will make people think about how furniture poverty affects families in our area. No-one should be without something as crucial as a bed.

In recent years the government has slashed funding for Local Welfare Assistance schemes. In East Sussex, support to help families in crisis set up home fell from £1.2m in 2013 to £166,000 in 2018. This drastic cut (over 86%) means charities like HFS are no longer funded to provide furniture for people in crisis, such as families moving on from temporary accommodation, Refuges or homelessness.

The report published this week by Sussex Community Foundation underlines the need for services like these. The report, Sussex Uncovered, says 37,000 children in Sussex are living in poverty and reports massive increases in homelessness in Hastings and Rother.

We hope people will donate to help HFS meet the needs of people in our community. Please pop a donation in to the tree at DLWP, into your local HFS store, and please think of us if you are replacing furniture or electricals at home. We provide a free collection service for good, reusable home items throughout Hastings and Rother.

No-one should be without a bed.

Make a donation

Pop Up

We’re excited to announce that HFS Hastings will be relocating to the Priory Meadow shopping centre temporarily.

The pop-up store will give us a chance to reach more people and reuse even more furniture.

It will also enable us to redecorate our full-time premises in Dorset Place. We haven’t seen most of the walls or floor since we moved in after our re-build in 2007, so we can’t wait to give it a lick of paint!

The pop-up is on a rent-free “meanwhile” basis, while the landlord looks for a new paying tenant. We are moving on Tues and Weds (21-22 May). Hastings store will be closed on Weds 22nd.

The new store will open at lunchtime on Thurs 23rd May

Open   Tues-Sat 9.30-4.30

Phone   01424 44 11 12

Address   SU2 (former Top Shop) Priory Meadow  Hastings  TN34 1PH

 

Thrift Fest is this Saturday!

The big day is Saturday 22nd September!

We’re celebrating 30 years of furniture reuse with a whole day of community activities at the Hastings Centre on the Ridge (opposite Conquest Hospital).

Please join us and have fun making, doing and trying new activities that don’t cost the earth!

Free advance tickets are available until the end of Friday on Eventbrite, or you can pay just £1 per adult on the door.

The programme and ticket link are on our website here.

New look

We’re refreshing the look of our fleet of collection and delivery vans over the next few weeks, thanks to Thomas Design & Graphics in St Leonards.

We hope the new design will catch your eye when you see us out and about, and help people become more aware of our services.

As a small local charity we don’t have much of an advertising budget, so we want to make the most of these “mobile billboards”.

Part of the new design is the statement fighting furniture poverty since 1988 – 30 years this year! Check out our anniversary celebration ThriftFest on Sat 22nd September.

Work with us!

We will really miss Robyn, who is leaving us to join her family’s business and train to be a Plumber. Watch the interview with her about her role at HFS (click play above).

We are looking for someone with the same positive attitude, love of active work, friendly but professional communication skills and enjoyment of coaching and helping others.

Could it be you?

Read more about the vacancy and apply

Changing our times

We’ve simplified our opening times. From 1st July 2018 we will be open from 9.304.30 every day from Tuesday to Saturday.

This means there will be more time for our Saturday shoppers to explore our stores.

We will also be able to provide some collections and deliveries on Saturdays for folk who cannot take time off work during the week.

We will be closed so our team can rest on Sundays and Mondays.

Podcast features HFS

HFS featured in Tiernan Douieb’s Partly Political Podcast

Tiernan compered our fantastic comedy fund-raiser in May and wanted to feature HFS as part of Small Charities Week.

We talk about the challenges and joys of running a small local charity, the issues affecting people in our area, how policies affect us and how people can get involved and support us.

Listen to the Partly Political Podcast  (Contains some swearing. Interview starts approx 20 mins into episode)

Photo of Tiernan Douieb and Mark Thomas on stage at De La Warr Pavilion in May by Bob Mazzer

Households in crisis need furniture

We’re campaigning to reverse East Sussex County Council’s proposed cuts to the Discretionary East Sussex Support Scheme (DESSS). This local welfare provision scheme provides emergency help to households who are struggling, providing food, utilities or household furniture to those in need.

ESCC proposes to reduce the amount it spends on DESSS by 70% and stop providing household items such as beds, cookers and fridges. HFS has been proud to be part of delivering the scheme in Hastings and Rother, helping low-income households that are starting again after homelessness, escaping domestic violence, moving into independent living after care, or recovering from a crisis such as a house fire.

A survey on the proposed cuts has been set up by ESCC and can be completed online by anyone who has ever used the scheme. HFS is bringing this survey to the attention of all our customers who have been DESSS beneficiaries and is offering printed copies of the survey in both of our stores.

HFS featured in an article about this by Dr Frances Ryan in The Guardian.

The surveys are available on the County Council website.

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