Salvos welcomes new home
Tuesday, 15th December, 2015
By Darrin Manuel
The local branch of the Salvation Army is settling into a new home after finally reaching an agreement with the Demo Club.
The Demo, which is currently undergoing a $5 million upgrade, had been in negotiations with the Salvos for some time to buy their former shop located between the club and the recently acquired Video Ezy store.
It’s understood the Salvos were reluctant to part with their old store, but finally agreed to a move when the Demo offered to purchase the Browzers book shop in exchange for their old premises.
The move looms as a positive for both parties, with the Demo now having no obstacles for its expansion, and the Salvos receiving a larger store in an arguably better location.
Local Salvation Army captain Paul Kurth said he could understand volunteers’ attachment to the old store, but added that the benefits offered by the new location were simply too good to pass up.
“I’ve only been in town since July, and I understand there was a little reluctance (to move),” he said
“But this is the perfect location, the perfect building, and the Demo’s offer was very generous, it was a good offer to accept.
“When I walked in this morning the place was very fresh and vibrant feel to it, it’s so good.”
The Demo helped the Salvos move their stock into the new store over the weekend, and volunteers quickly got to work setting everything up so the store can run in a “pop-up” capacity until the deal between the two parties is finalised in January.
The new building offers more floor space, increased storage, and is expected to be renovated to house the captain’s office and possibly other Salvos services in future.
As for the former Salvos building, it will serve to connect both wings of the expanded Demo Club in future, however in the time being it will be used as a base during renovations.
“For now we’ll leave it as it is, basically an on-site office for the builders and a crib room,” said Demo operations officer, Ben Offord.
“And also for the time being as a bit of storage, which we desperately need.”
Mr Offord said the extra space offered by the old Salvos store could also be used to expand the lounge, serve as a dedicated area for club sports such as bowls and darts, or even house an internal garden.