Great Yarmouth businesses vow to fill a truck for Ukraine

People in front of a building and a lorry.

Businesses across Great Yarmouth are banding together to send essentials to Ukrainian refugees in Poland. - Credit: James Weeds / Kellie Vanham

Firms across Great Yarmouth have banded together to fill a 44 tonne truck with supplies to take to refugees displaced by the war in Ukraine.

Trevor Saunders, manager of the Mandalay Wellbeing CIC food bank, has organised the campaign to fill the truck with essential goods.

Trevor Saunders, Rob Haslam, Great Yarmouth mayor Adrian Thompson and Paulina Doncel at the Priory Centre.

Trevor Saunders, Rob Haslam, Great Yarmouth mayor Adrian Thompson and Paulina Doncel at the Priory Centre. - Credit: James Weeds

Mr Saunders, 55, has based his operation at the Priory Centre by Great Yarmouth Minster. The centre will be used as a drop off point and depot. All donations will be sorted onto 26 pallets and loaded onto a lorry bound for relief centres in Poland.

Mr Saunders said: "It's been a hell of a week.

"Donations are coming from everywhere.

"Things are coming together and, fingers crossed, this will help as many people as possible."

Rob Haslam, Trevor Saunders, Great Yarmouth mayor Adrian Thompson and Pailina Doncel.

The hall inside the Priory Centre will serve as a drop off point for donations to be sent to Ukrainian refugees in Poland. - Credit: James Weeds

Rob Haslam, owner of The Priory Centre, said: "Anything we can do to support and provide some assistance for Ukrainians, we are very happy to do so.

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"We're providing the grand hall for storage of all drop-offs and helping to get the supplies out to people in need."

The 44-tonne lorry will be provided by Tim Vanham Transport and is scheduled to leave Great Yarmouth on Saturday, March 12.

A man in front of an artic lorry.

Tim Vanham, owner of Tim Vanham Tranposrt, in front of the 44 tonne lorry that will carry essentials to Ukrainian refugees in Poland. - Credit: Kellie Vanham

On Friday, Great Yarmouth mayor Adrian Thompson made the first donation at the centre.

Mr Thompson said: "We have to stand with and support the people of Ukraine.

"Together we're working with Trevor and the people of Yarmouth to do what we can."

The mayor by his car.

Great Yarmouth mayor Adrian Thompson was the first person to make a donation at The Priory Centre. - Credit: James Weeds

Hays Travel on the Market Place is also a drop-off point for people wishing to make donations.

Store manager Natasha Woodrow said: "It's a great cause. We want to do as much as we can."

Hays Travel's Market Place branch is accepting donations and is open Monday to Saturday from 9.15am until 5pm.

Store manager Natasha Woodrow and travel consultant Denise Coleman.

The Market Place branch of Hays Travel are accepting donations for Ukrainian refugees. - Credit: James Weeds

Mandalay Wellbeing is also working with Filby Post Office and Tesco Caister.

If you would like to donate, please visit one of those drop-off points or visit the Priory Centre, which will be open on Sunday, March 6 from 10.30am until 2.30pm and from Monday to Saturday from 10am until 1pm.

The drop-off points are looking for new sleeping bags, clothes, torches, batteries, walky-talkies and non-perishable food.

For more information, visit Mandalay Wellbeing's Facebook page.

A drop off sign.

The Priory Centre near St Nicholas Church will be open for drop-offs from Monday 10am. - Credit: James Weeds