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Norwich church drop-in centre staff honoured for pandemic work

Staff at a Salvation Army drop-in for homeless people in Norwich have been honoured for their work in the pandemic with a commemorative blue plaque, on behalf of HM Lord-Lieutenant for Norfolk Lady Phillipa Dannatt.

Pottergate Advice and Refreshment Centre is an advice and refreshment centre on Pottergate run by the church and charity. Throughout the pandemic, it was open seven days a week, providing information, advice and support to people sleeping rough or experiencing homelessness.


In June, Rev Matthew Hutton, a Deputy Lieutenant for Norfolk, visited the centre to present manager Nicola Darkins and her team with the plaque and paid tribute to all at the centre.


Matthew said: “The staff here really did go above and beyond over Covid – with no furlough, increased opening times, increased work load, constantly giving of themselves whilst trying to protect the people they serve and themselves. I hope it will be a real boost to their morale to know that someone has noticed them.”


Nicola said she was incredibly proud of her team for all their efforts over the last two years.


She said: “The ARC is a place of safety – a light in the darkness where for the past 22 years the people of Norwich and further afield have come in their time of need. It was a great privilege to be able to carry on during the pandemic and if it wasn’t for the staff’s compassion, dedication and resilience we would not have been able to do this, let alone extend our service from five to seven days per week.”


Pictured above are manager Nicola Darkins and her team at the Salvation Army Pottergate Advice and Refreshment Centre in Norwich.


Keith Morris, 23/07/2022

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