People of Plymouth lend a hand at the Big Sort day


More than 40 people including staff from Plymouth City Council, Plymouth Community Homes and members of the public helped sort through the hundreds of bags of donations for families who have been affected by the Clowance Street fire.

The volunteers packed into Stirling House in Honicknowle today to start sorting the bedding, clothes and shoes into sizes before they are moved to The Free shop in George Street so the families can access them.

Since the fire, kind-hearted members of the public have literally been flooding Devonport with donations to the families affected, some of whom have lost everything in the blaze.

Clint Jones from Devonport Live said: “Once again it was overwhelming to see the scale of the donations we have received. The volunteers have worked tirelessly all day and I think we are finally starting to make significant progress in sorting through the items. We are still working with families to figure out what else they might need over the coming months and I would urge everyone to keep an eye on social media for specific item requests.”

Councillor Philippa Davey, Cabinet Member for Safer and Stronger Communities said: “We have been absolutely blown away by how generous the people of Plymouth have been. It just shows what fantastic community spirit people have. I’d like to personally thank each and every person who has donated items or given some time to help the families.”

Elaine Pellow, Chair for PCH, said: “I couldn’t believe the amount of donations we were faced with sorting through today. It was incredible and overwhelming! To see the results of the generosity of the community all gathered in one place was truly humbling. It really did need the efforts of all of those who volunteered today to organise it into some sort of order so that families can lay their hands on the things they need. I was privileged to be one of the volunteers and I’m just glad I could do my bit, along with the 7 other members of staff from PCH, to help ensure that those items so kindly donated reach those who need it.”

Now that the main bulk of donations have been sorted staff can support local residents to start working out what families still need so that they can ask for specific donations such as larger household items.

The local community is eager to thank people in the City for the generous donations as well as a significant level of cash that is being coordinated and distributed to the families affected.

11 of the families who lost their homes in the Clowance Street fire have now been rehoused.

For more information on how to donate specific items please call 304321 or email

Some of the bags of donations at the start of the big sort day.

Some of the bags of donations at the start of the big sort day.

Some of the bags of donations now sorted into sizes ready to be given to families.

Some of the bags of donations now sorted into sizes ready to be given to families.