Bosses behind the first social supermarket in Angus say there is “no chance” of it reopening, a fortnight after its sudden closure was revealed.
S-Mart, which provided affordable food in a bid to support those living in poverty, collapsed due to soaring energy prices.
Staff say the charity was “like a family.”
“I was shocked, I was,” said Chantelle Louise Butler, one of 11 workers who lost their jobs.
“A lot of people were shocked and upset because you wouldn’t get a job where they work around childcare and things like that.
“I was funded by Angus Council and found my job through Angus Council. I was really excited as well, as it’s something that works around my childcare.”
S-Mart played a vital role in helping people in Angus through the pandemic and the cost of living crisis – using surplus food from big chain supermarkets and selling them at affordable prices.
But this summer, the charity’s energy prices soared from around £400 a month to £1,400.
Bosses took the decision to close, describing the fees as “wholly unmanageable”.
Pauline Lockhart of Community First, the charity behind the initiative, said: “We’re really proud of the support we’ve given to the community over the past three years.
“Rising fuel and food costs and a lack of core funding have contributed to the closure.”
S-Mart was set up in 2020. It later expanded into the Little Green Café, providing a warm space for the community to meet and offering work experience to local high school pupils.
“We were like family, we were really close,” added Chantelle.
“We all try and keep in touch where we can but it’s not going to be the same.”
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