A charity has blamed town centre regeneration for forcing it to close its shop doors after 18 years of trading.
Buskit has run a store in Main Street, Stenhousemuir, since 1996, generating vital funds to help disadvantaged children affected by the Chernobyl disaster in north Ukraine.
Suitable donations were sent to the country, and others sold in the shop, but chairman Alan Wardrop said they were forced to close due to the regeneration of the town and growth of cash-for-clothes shops.
Alan, a former music teacher at Grangemouth High School said: “We are very disappointed to have to close.
“The volunteers have worked so hard and we had a band of loyal customers but the shop just wasn’t making enough money to justify staying open.
He continued: “The regeneration of Stenhousemuir was terrible for us, it cut us off from the main shopping area and meant we got no passing trade.
“That, coupled with the clothes-buying shops that have sprung up everywhere meant donations were well down and a lack of volunteers to work in the shop resulted in us having to close.”
Buskit was founded 23 years ago and has provided 480 tonnes of humanitarian aid to the people of Romania and Belarus as well as delivered £81,000 of food aid, £115,000 of financial aid and sent over 227 volunteers, many of them Grangemouth High pupils, to work in hospitals, orphanages and schools.
Despite the setback, the charity will continue and has a trip planned for 2015.
Alan added: “This is not the end of Buskit, we will still be raising funds and continuing to do all we can to help the people affected by the Chernobyl nuclear disaster.
“We couldn’t keep the shop going, but there are plenty of other avenues we can use to raise funds.”