Didsburydad's Blog

From the not so mean streets of M20, blog about being a dad, Didsbury and dealing with parental confusion

Gimmee Shelter


The impossible has happened, the balance of power has shifted; the supermarkets and banks are outflanked. Prepare for a turf war there’s a new charity shop in the village.

Shelter, with a neon sign proclaiming their residence have set-up next to Oxfam in the spot vacated by David Pluck. I had a friend who would use the two Plucks as staging posts. Place a bet at one end, stroll the length of the village slowly enjoying a smoke and check how he had done at the other end, with the option of a celebratory Costa or Subway; symmetry.

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Now the new Shelter has surprised me for two reasons. First, there surely can’t be an attic, granny flat or kid’s toy box in South Manchester with anything left for eBay or passing on through the generations. Between 15 charity shops, Christian Aid, Domestic and foreign collections and the effect of the weather there are bare spare rooms and empty dressing up boxes across the village.

Secondly, this stops the natural expansion of uber charity shop, laureate endorsed hypermarket, Oxfam. Would Macy’s open next to Bloomingdales? Pepsi next to Coke? Costa next to Nero, let’s move on.

Whereas Pluck’s had only been somewhere that Didsbury Son was made to wait outside whilst Didsbury Dad and Uncle re-invested his sweet money, Shelter offers the opportunity to search for glitchless games and unscratched CDs.

Oxfam, with it’s impeccable credentials, lovely peanut butter and vastly over-priced books. I always imagined them spreading north until The Crown became the Oxfam Bar and Grill.

Aah well. At least the new Shelter will offer somewhere for their inappropriately dressed, over-zealous street hawkers to retire to when the pace gets too frantic outside Boots and they feel the glare of Barnados and Mind staff burning through their red tabards.

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Geese have flown in from as far as Canada to be ready for Friday's planned opening

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Not West Didsbury

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