Two dedicated volunteers have clocked up half a century of service to a Chorley charity shop which has celebrating its 25th anniversary in the town.

Marion Onslow and Elaine Heartfield, who both live in the town, have given up their free time for The Children’s Society charity shop, now based in Market Walk, since it first opened its original shop on Chapel Street, a quarter of century ago.

It was via their local churches, All Saints and St George’s, that the two ladies heard about the shop opening and offered support.

For Elaine, 67, a mother-of-four and grandmother-of-eight, it was very much a family affair because her mother Marie Barraclough also volunteered for the shop.

Elaine said: “I remember my mum being really excited when it was the Queen Mother’s 90th birthday and she was helping the other volunteers to do the shop up to celebrate.

“I went in to see her and they were all so happy, like one big family all celebrating together and having a laugh.”

The Children’s Society offers care, legal support, respite and mentoring schemes to help children from all different backgrounds. Marion has also been a staunch supporter of the charity.

The mother-of-three and grandmother-of-three said: “It was a much smaller shop when we first opened and we quite often used to take things home ourselves to wash so they were ready to sell.

“But now so much has changed. It is two units now and in a prime position for the car park so our profile in the town is much better which is good for the charity.”

Denise Trafford, manager of the Market Walk shop, said: “The people who dedicate their time in this way, like Marion and Elaine, are pure gold to us. Without the volunteers, we simply could not exist.”