A HOSPICE'S hopes of providing 24-hour palliative care moved a step closer at the weekend with the opening of a new charity shop.

St Cuthbert's Hospice, in Durham, unveiled its sixth store, in Front Street, Sacriston, on Saturday morning, which was opened by North Durham MP Kevan Jones.

The hospice provides free specialist palliative care for people in the Durham and Chester-le-Street areas.

However, it plans to develop a ten-bed inpatient unit, at a cost of £3.2m, to complement its daytime service and is busy raising funds to complete the project.

Mr Jones said: "St Cuthbert's is a local charity that really works hard to help people at what can be a very difficult time.

"I'm sure this new shop will help raise vital funds and I'm glad to be here on the opening day."

Volunteers are being sought to help out at the shop. Work will include window dressing, sorting items and sales and training will be given.

To donate to the St Cuthbert's appeal, or to work as a volunteer at the new charity shop, contact 0191-386 1170.