Skip to content

County Durham: generous hoarder opens church shop to sell his treasures

A 'King of Clutter' in County Durham has opened a shop in his local church to sell all his treasures accumulated over 75 years, in aid of Tearfund and the church roof ...

A 'King of Clutter' in County Durham has opened a shop in his local church to sell all his treasures accumulated over 75 years, in aid of Tearfund and the church roof ...

If you’ve ever looked at the piles of possessions in your spare room  and thought ‘I’ve got too much stuff!’, you’ll be inspired by the story of Godfrey Bennett from Newton Aycliffe in County Durham.

Seventy-five-year-old Godfrey (pictured right with vicar Rev Christopher Pearson) is handing in his crown as ‘King of Clutter’ – and Tearfund is set to benefit.

His wife – driven to distraction by his worldly goods stacked on every surface – had jokingly threatened to divorce him if he didn’t mend his ways.

"I thought divorce would be a bit messy," explains Godfrey.

His response was to open a shop in his local parish church, St Clare’s. All Sorts is solely dedicated to selling off seven-and-a-half decades of accumulated treasures.

"If you tell me what you’re looking for I’ll probably have it and if not it will either be in the garage or the spare room at home, which is still full of stuff," he says.

Items on sale range from board games to vintage china and a cuddly bumblebee called Buzz. His earliest possession is a pocket watch given to him by his parents when he was six.

Word got out about All Sorts; collectors and hoarders have flocked to the shop in search of a bargain.

"I’ve sold about £1,000 worth of items for charity, which is pretty good considering how many items are less than one pound."

Along with the church roof, Tearfund is a grateful beneficiary.

"You’ve got to do things, I’m not one of these people that can sit and just do nothing and I like helping people," says Godfrey.

It also seems to have worked wonders for his marriage: the couple are off to Llandudno for a break – where they went on honeymoon.

* Godfrey's quotes from Tearfund via Charity Today website. Image courtesy of Newton News

Get more inspiring reading

You can order our printed INSPIRE magazine in bundles of 10 for your church. Get encouraged by stories of God at work in the UK and around the world – and it's great for giving away to those on the edge of church, too! Order FREE* for your church (*we welcome an annual donation towards our costs).

Subscribe

Join the discussion