Arcade defends stance on collectors

The piazza area of Sanderson Arcade was packed for the switch-on event.
The piazza area of Sanderson Arcade was packed for the switch-on event.

Bosses at a shopping arcade have defended their decision to ask a group of charity collectors to move on from their entrance.

A resident raised concerns that collectors on behalf of Marie Curie Cancer Care were unable to shelter from the rain under the canopy at the entrance of Sanderson Arcade in Bridge Street, Morpeth, on Saturday while raising money for the charity.

After witnessing a security guard move on the collectors, they were disappointed to see them move further along Bridge Street to stand in the rain.

However, Dransfield Properties Ltd – owners of the Arcade – said the area of pavement under the canopy was part of the arcade.

As a result, the centre supports only one charity collection at a time, with one fund-raising appeal already taking place on the day.

A spokesman for Dransfield Properties said: “We do have a rule of thumb that we can only accommodate one charity collection at Sanderson Arcade at any one time and this was gently explained to the representatives of the Marie Curie Cancer Care when they visited the centre.

“Collections also need to be organised in advance so we can be sure there is no duplication.

“On that particular day, we also had a collection for our Tree of Lights Christmas collection which had been organised and planned some time ago.

“This is supporting three local charities in the run-up to Christmas – these are Great North Air Ambulance Service, Cancer Research North East and Barnabas Safe and Sound.

“We find that having one charity at a time collecting is much more beneficial for the charity involved and we would be very happy to arrange a date for Marie Curie Cancer Care to fund-raise at the shopping centre.”