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Meet the Ammanford shop manager who has raised over £1 million for charity

Sue puts the success of the shop down to the passion of her team of staff. Credit: Barnardo's Cymru

After nearly ten years on the shop-floor and over a million pounds raised for charity, Sue Langford knows how to spot a bargain.

The 56-year-old works on the shop floor at Barnardo's in Ammanford. Last year alone, the charity shop raised £184,000 - making it one of the top performing Barnardo's stores across the UK.

Sue's hoping she'll be crowned Retail Staff Member of the Year. Credit: Barnardo's Cymru

Over the nine years Sue has worked at the shop, the Ammanford Barnardo's store has raised £1.1 million. An achievement Sue thinks is down to the passion of her staff.

I tell my team not to think of it like a charity shop and think, ‘that’ll do’ but to treat it as a normal retail environment and give the donations the same amount of care and attention as in any other shop.

We get a lot of regular customers. Some come in every day to make sure they don’t miss a bargain while others who live outside Ammanford make it a regular weekly trip. Many of them remark on how it looks more like a mainstream store than a charity shop.

– Sue Langford

Sue started working at the Ammanford store in 2010 when it was a pop-up shop without any staff and on a six month lease. Now the shop is a well-known fixture in the town.

The Ammanford Barnardo's came in second in the "best performer" competition among all of the 700 Barnardo's shops across the UK.

Sue says the 'most bizarre object' donated this week was a model of a spinal column. Credit: Barnardo's Cymru

After all her hard work Sue, from Brynamman, has now been nominated for "Retail Staff Member of the Year" in the Charity Retail Association awards.

For Sue, she knew from start that the job was the right one for her:

"I love a challenge and as soon as I walked in the door I knew this was for me".

"Every day is different and I never know what will come in next, that’s what makes if exciting. I love coming into work, meeting the customers, thinking up new ideas and knowing the money we raise is supporting such a great cause".

From its beginnings as a pop-up, the Ammanford charity shop now has four members of staff and 21 volunteers. The charity says it receives around 300-400 bags of donations each week.