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East Anglia Future 50

VIP guest to open UK's biggest Cancer Research superstore where everything will cost £3 or less

PUBLISHED: 09:25 10 July 2019 | UPDATED: 09:26 10 July 2019

Two chains new to Gapton Hall will be onto the retail park this summer. Meanwhile work is beginning to remodel the entrance Picture: House PR

Two chains new to Gapton Hall will be onto the retail park this summer. Meanwhile work is beginning to remodel the entrance Picture: House PR

House PR

A VIP guest will have the best of inspirations when he opens Norfolk's newest and biggest charity superstore.

Gary Durling, a parcel courier from Great Yarmouth, will do the VIP honours and officially open the town's new Cancer Research UK charity superstore. His father died of lung cancer following a year-long battle he chose to keep to himself Picture: Cancer Research UKGary Durling, a parcel courier from Great Yarmouth, will do the VIP honours and officially open the town's new Cancer Research UK charity superstore. His father died of lung cancer following a year-long battle he chose to keep to himself Picture: Cancer Research UK

Gary Durling will cut the ribbon when Cancer Research UK opens number 22 in the chain, at Gapton Hall on July 25.

The 49-year-old lost his dad, Roy, to lung cancer in 2013 after a secret, year-long battle.

He said: "When he died the hospital told us he'd been diagnosed with lung cancer back in 2012.

"He didn't want anyone to know he was dying, and he kept it to himself all that time and didn't tell anyone.

Roy Durling kept his lung cancer diagnosis secret so as not to worry his family. His son Gary will officially open Norfolk's first charity superstore Picture: Cancer Research UKRoy Durling kept his lung cancer diagnosis secret so as not to worry his family. His son Gary will officially open Norfolk's first charity superstore Picture: Cancer Research UK

He added: "My father was an incredibly courageous man.

"He was 72 when he died, and right to the end he was always thinking about others.

"I wasn't aware until the night he passed away that he had cancer.

"Now I want to do my bit and raise awareness and funds to fight this terrible disease.

"When I saw my dad in the hospital I told him how much I admired him, and his strength, and he just looked at me and smiled.

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"That's one of my lasting memories of my father and it's something which spurs me on."

Also attending the opening will be East Anglian author Felicity Ratcliffe who recently lost a friend to cancer.

She is donating all the proceeds of her new book The Dark Side of the Book Club to Cancer Research UK.

Store manager Steve O'Brien said: "It's great to have Gary at our opening to help raise the profile of our work.

"Our Great Yarmouth store is our newest and biggest and it has been designed to offer an amazing shopping experience with a fabulous selection of quality fashion and homeware pieces."

Everything in the store will cost £3 or less, with high-value products identified with a golden ticket.

The store will also offer information leaflets on cancer and where to find advice.

Julie Byard, Cancer Research UK's trading director, launched an appeal for volunteers.

She said: "Even an hour a week can make a difference and it's a great way to make new friends and learn new skills so please pop on down to learn more about these and other opportunities to get involved."

The store will open from 9.30-7pm Monday to Saturday, Sunday 10-4pm.

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