Help with school uniform for hard-pressed families

Published Tuesday, 6th August 2019

Help is at hand for families in Hartlepool who are struggling to meet the cost of buying school uniform for their children.

Hartlepool Borough Council’s Children’s Hub at the Civic Centre keeps a large stock of school uniform donated by families who no longer require it and this is available free throughout the year to other families in need.

The items – all of which have been laundered – range from skirts, dresses and trousers to polo shirts, blazers and sports kit and cover boys and girls, all ages from nursery right up to secondary and all the different schools.

As well as the stock at Civic Centre, there’s also a selection of clothing at Kilmarnock Road Children and Young People Family Resource Centre and the Belle Vue Community Sports and Youth Centre in Kendal Road, and people are welcome to drop in and enquire during normal office hours. Some schools also recycle their uniform so don’t be afraid to ask!

The support available has received an additional boost thanks to Elizabeth Trowsdale Norman and her family. Elizabeth, who passed away in 2017 aged 104, was born and lived in Hartlepool for half of her life before moving to North Yorkshire.

Elizabeth Trowsdale Norman

Elizabeth Trowsdale Norman

She was passionate about education, particularly access to education for girls. Elizabeth passed her 11+ exam, but was unable to attend grammar school because her family could not afford to support her.

Elizabeth’s family have created a fund to help provide school uniform and essential school supplies to those suffering financial hardship. Preference will be given to applicants from Hartlepool’s Victoria Ward, which is where Elizabeth was born and where she lived while she was at school.

There is also a small, limited fund for new school clothing and items for children living in the Owton Manor and Rift House areas. 

Councillor Leisa Smith, Chair of Hartlepool Borough Council’s Children’s Services Committee, said: “The cost of a school uniform can be a significant additional financial pressure for families.

“Thanks to people donating items of school clothing which they no longer need, and also thanks to the generosity of Elizabeth Trowsdale Norman and her family, we can give those families a helping hand.”

For more information or to donate items of school uniform which are no longer required, please call in to Civic Centre or any of the other centres mentioned above or call 01429 284284 and press Option 1.