On Friday, 19 May, St Vincent’s Furniture Store celebrated 30 years of helping the vulnerable and those coming out of homelessness in Sheffield.

  To mark this fantastic achievement a Celebration Dinner and Dance was held at Baldwin’s Omega.  With almost 100 people in attendance a great night was had by all.

Ready to dine

  Lord David Blunkett was our guest speaker and we also had entertainment from our Mother of God’s Got Talent winner, Connie Campbell.

  Bishop Ralph, Mgr Kilgannon and the new Lord Mayor of Sheffield, Anne Murphy, were also welcomed on the evening, along with our long-time supporter and ‘Mother of God’s Got Talent’ Judge, Radio Sheffield presenter, Paulette Edwards.

Left to right: Kayto, Paulette Edwards, Ralph Dickins, Lorraine Healy, Mike Murphy, David Blunkett, Anne Murphy, Lord Mayor of Sheffield and Margaret Blunkett

  The BBC news report which had been put together for our 25th Anniversary by 3 young reporters from All Saints Catholic High School was also shown.  The report outlines the work that is carried out at the Store, with interviews from staff and volunteers, along with a journey on the van.

Lord David Blunkett

  Following a delicious 4 course meal, David Blunkett addressed everyone, telling many funny stories about his time as an MP and also his younger days growing up in Parson Cross, when they were so poor that their double glazing was the ice on the inside of the windows.  He also touched on the fantastic work that the Furniture Store carries out and its importance to the City.  He finished by thanking the staff and volunteers for all they do.

  Following David’s speech we then had two songs from Connie (‘Mother of God’s Got Talent’ 2016 winner); both songs were from the shows, one from Les Miserables and the other from Miss Saigon.

Nick Hardwick (aka Little Ant) (left) and Mike Murphy

  The Honourable Mike Murphy, who is an Ambassador for the Store, spoke about the work that takes place and the help that is given to people who have nothing and are in so much need.  He thanked the staff and volunteers for all their efforts in keeping the Store going and also congratulated them on achieving 30 years.

  Along with our own Little Ant and Dec (from ‘Mother of God’s Got Talent’), Mike then carried out the funniest raffle draw in history.

  Back in 1987, 4 members of the Mother of God and St Wilfrid SVP Conference had an idea to help people who were struggling and in need when it came to buying beds for their children, having a table to eat at or just a chair to sit on.  Who would have thought that 30 years later from this little acorn, nearly 100,000 people have been assisted with almost 10,000 tonnes of recycled furniture and household goods?  Every individual and/or family receives our assistance completely free of charge.

  Lorraine Healy, Manager of the Furniture Store, said, “This could not be done without the donations of both money and furniture that people have made to the Store over the years, so thank you to everyone and please continue your invaluable support.

  “Thank you from the Store to all who attended on the night and helped in any way.  A special word of thanks to Mike Murphy, an Ambassador for the Store and a true gentleman.”

Lorraine Healy