A charitable organisation which distributes food, clothes, and household basics to people in need is reopening after addressing concerns it was breaching Covid regulations.

Volunteer-run Lewisham Donation Hub, which offers support to the homeless, refugees and other members of the community facing hardship, was told to close by council enforcement officers last week, following complaints.

The Hub announced last night it is near fully resuming its work today, having introduced new safety measures. Donations will now be dropped-off to an outdoor area and then quarantined for 72 hours before distribution.

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A spokesperson for Lewisham Donation Hub said: "The long and the short of it...we can near enough fully reopen tomorrow, with your amazing community donations getting to see the light of day once more.

“They will also, once again, be available from our Covid secure outdoor area.

“The fundamental change versus our prior setup is that we will now be quarantining your donations for 72 hours, and will also request that any items picked from our rails are taken away (or placed into quarantine).

“Whilst this isn't something the major retailers are doing, we are more than happy to make it work. We have the donation volumes and the volunteers - and ultimately, it helps keep those we support safe from Covid.

“There are also a number of smaller but well advised additions that were suggested to us by the Environmental Health department at Lewisham Council. 

“We thank them for working with us and getting this community resource open once again.”

A petition calling for the Hub to fully re-open has already been signed by over 3,000 people.

The Hub makes use of community donations, distributing a variety of goods according to the needs of whoever visits.

Róisín Grasby, who launched the petition, says a mother escaping domestic violence was recently given a double pram.

The Hub has also distributed laptops and other electronic devices to children learning from home in lockdown.

You can view the petition here