Bensons turns “preloved beds” into £7.1 million for British Heart Foundation

Mary Youlden
Authored by Mary Youlden
Posted Monday, April 26, 2021 - 9:28pm

Free collection service for unwanted beds and furniture helps save lives

Finding new homes for preloved beds and bedroom furniture has helped to save lives by raising more than £7.1 million for the British Heart Foundation thanks to customers of Bensons for Beds.

Bensons customers can donate unwanted bed frames, bases, mattresses and bedroom furniture to the British Heart Foundation (BHF) which sells them through its network of 190 home stores. Proceeds go to help life-saving research into heart and circulatory diseases.

In the past year the Bensons-BHF partnership has raised almost £90,000 despite both having to close stores for several months to comply with lockdown rules. That took the total raised since it was launched in October 2013 to £7,181,092. 

There is an environmental benefit too. During the twelve month period, the scheme helped to find new homes for 3,788 tonnes of furniture that might otherwise have been sent to landfill.

As Bensons and the BHF reopen their stores, following the easing of lockdown restrictions, the BHF has restarted its free Covid-secure collection service. They expect interest in the scheme to be enormous as households up and down the country update their bedrooms over spring and summer.

Items will be sold through the BHF’s home stores, part of its 700-strong network of shops, and its online eBay store. BHF shops re-opened on 12 April in England and Wales, with home stores now open in Scotland and fashion shops in Scotland to follow later in April.

Bensons has remained open for business online and re-opened its 16 stores in Scotland on Easter Monday (5 April), and its 160-plus stores in England and Wales on Monday 12 April.

Allison Swaine-Hughes, Retail Director at the British Heart Foundation, said: “We want to say a huge thank you to Bensons for Beds; this is our eighth year of partnership and to date they and their customers have raised an incredible £7.1 million for the BHF, every penny of which has gone towards our vital work to fund heart research.

“Despite what has undoubtedly been a challenging year for retail, Bensons and their customers have also continued to donate much needed bedroom furniture to the BHF’s 190 nationwide home stores, which has also helped prevent 3,788 tonnes of furniture from going to waste. Thank you for the continued support.”

Bensons marketing director Helen Nunn said: “Everyone at Bensons and all our customers are delighted that we’ve teamed up with the BHF to support the amazing work they do. It’s fantastic to think a preloved bed or furniture can be reused and help save a life.

“Bensons and the BHF are looking forward to the nation’s high street shops reopening so we can get back to business and work together to raise even more money to fight heart disease.”

Here are some of the ways fund raising money can help:

  • £88 helps to fund 4 hours of vital support from a Helpline Cardiac Nurse. This can make a difference to heart patients’ daily lives by providing vital support to empower them to better manage their condition and treatment.
  • £500 helps to fund a defibrillator for a community first responder (CFR) scheme. This will allow volunteers to attend local emergencies and provide immediate care more quickly than an ambulance can arrive. A defibrillator can help restart the heart after someone’s had a cardiac arrest and is a vital piece of equipment for a CFR.
  • £250,000 could pay for all the costs of a heart attack research project for three years, including research staff and funds for the equipment and laboratory materials needed for the project.
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