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Businessman converts van into mobile shop to sell essentials to vulnerable in Ipswich

PUBLISHED: 07:30 16 November 2020 | UPDATED: 16:41 16 November 2020

Scott Clarke has diversified his business into a mobile shop selling essential items out of a truck.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Scott Clarke has diversified his business into a mobile shop selling essential items out of a truck. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Sarah Lucy Brown

An Ipswich businessman has converted a spare van into a mobile shop to help vulnerable people across the town access essential goods.

Scott Clarke from Ipswich has expanded his business during lockdown.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNScott Clarke from Ipswich has expanded his business during lockdown. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Scott Clarke, 33, was forced to temporarily close his waste management firm which he runs with his business partner Phil Morley, when the country went into a second lockdown.

In a bid to keep the business ticking over, Mr Clarke decided to convert a spare van into a mobile shop which is now visiting sites in the IP2 area in a bid to help vulnerable residents.

“There’s not a mobile shop in Ipswich that I know off at the moment,” he said.

“It is rewarding to do something in the community even if it isn’t particularly brilliant financially.

Scott Clarke has diversified his business into a mobile shop selling essential items out of a truck.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNScott Clarke has diversified his business into a mobile shop selling essential items out of a truck. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

“I’m pleased we have been able to help a few people out.

“A lady in Rushmere said she had been waiting for one of these for years so people have been pleased to see us.

“We’ve done a lot of residential homes and assisted living places, as the elderly don’t want to be going out and getting taxis to and from shops.

“We try to go down to them once or twice a week to help them out.”

Scott Clarke is driving his mobile shop to visit vulnerable people in Ipswich during lockdown.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNScott Clarke is driving his mobile shop to visit vulnerable people in Ipswich during lockdown. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

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As well as helping locals the new shop aims to support Mr Clarke’s business which has taken a hit during the second lockdown.

“It has been a struggle because Christmas is just around the corner and everyone needs an income,” he said.

“It seems everything gets a bit more expensive at this time of the year, your heating bills go up as well so if I don’t work then my kids don’t get present, my home doesn’t get heated.

“The first time we were shut down we did really struggle but this time I thought we needed to do something.

“So we can not only keep things ticking over a bit but also get out to those who need access to essential items but might not want to or be able to get out to a shop.”

Such has been the success of the store, the business are aiming to continue the service after the lockdown.

He added: “We are going to keep it as an extra bow to the business after this has all blown over because of the feedback that we’ve been getting. People want us, it is convenient so assuming it all goes well we will continue after lockdown as well.”

Mr Clarke wanted to thank his business partner Phil as well as Dina’s wall art who supplied van sinage at short notice.


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