Fri, 27 Jul 2018
A NEWBURY food shop owner is maintaining a Second World War tradition – by helping customers help others.
The proprietor of The Monkey Tree in Northcroft Lane, Denzil Carlton, said that while not everyone is comfortable giving cash to the homeless, a guarantee that donations will be spent wisely is catching on.
Customers can offer ‘suspended’ items, which means that, when they are buying food or drink, they can pay for something extra or just make a donation.
This is put towards a free hot drink or food for someone in genuine need.
The usage of ‘suspended coffee’ reportedly started in Naples, Italy, during the war.
Mr Carlton, aged 38, who opened the shop selling “burritos, baguettes and all kinds of loveliness” six months ago, said: “It’s really taking off.
“We have people just donating a coffee or snack and we’ve had some people donating £20.
“Sadly, there is a real need for this in Newbury – a young lady who hadn’t eaten for ages came in just now.”
He added: “One chap came in and was able to have his first food in days. Someone who runs the soup kitchen told me that one meal has to last some people several days.
“I’m glad that word is spreading about what we're trying to do here.”
Anyone who would like to support Mr Carlton’s scheme should drop into The Monkey Tree, where no purchase is necessary, and contribute whatever they wish.