FOUR “much-loved” shops in the Borders need volunteers to help keep the stores running following forced closures due to coronavirus.

Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland had to close 45 shops during the latest coronavirus lockdown resulting in a loss of more than £400,000 of income, says the charity.

Stores across the Borders opened their doors again on Monday (April 26) in line with First Minister Nicola Sturgeon’s route map out of lockdown.

And now an urgent appeal has been issued for volunteers to help save the charity’s stores in Galashiels, Melrose, Kelso and Hawick.

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In a statement issued earlier this month, Carole Edmonds, regional retail manager at Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland, said: “We are delighted to be reopening our doors again and the team are really looking forward to welcoming back our customers.

“We’re desperately looking for volunteers to help keep the store running and we’re urging people in the local community to spare a few hours a week in the shop.

“Our volunteers are vital in helping us run our shops and in raising funds to help people across Scotland live their lives to the full.”

A number of roles are available for volunteers, from helping on the shop floor to managing socially-distanced queues.

The Borders stores can be found on Park Street, Galashiels, the High Street’s of Melrose and Hawick, while Kelso’s shop is located on Horsemarket.

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“Lots of us are looking forward to getting back out and seeing our local high streets busy and bustling again,” added Ms Edmonds. “By joining our friendly team, you’ll be helping to save your local store as our community gets back on its feet after lockdown.

“The safety of our staff, volunteers and customers is a priority and the safety measures that we put in place in the summer are still running in the shop.

“All stock is quarantined for 72 hours, cough screens and hand sanitising stations are installed and there is a limit to the number of people allowed in the shop at any time.”

Ms Edmonds said that shops were set to start accepting stock donations again on Monday (April 26).

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“We always receive the most amazing donations from the local community and we’re so thankful for their continued support.

“To help the team manage donations, we’re asking anyone who has stock to donate to please give the shop a ring to arrange a drop-off time.”

If you’d like to volunteer at your local Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland store please email