Edinburgh cost of living: Coat exchange returns to Ocean Terminal and Fort Kinnaird ahead of winter

A “no questions asked” coat exchange has returned to Edinburgh ahead of winter, with fears that the soaring cost of living will see families struggle in the ‘season of crisis’.

The Leith Collective, in Edinburgh’s Ocean Terminal, will have rails of good quality coats available for collection this winter at no cost – an offer that will prove a lifeline for some, the social enterprise said.

Coats will be available for anyone to collect at Ocean Terminal, Fort Kinnaird and a third centre in Glasgow completely free of charge, with no questions asked.

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The community interest company successfully launched its first ever winter coat exchange in January 2022 which proved a welcome helping hand to families under increasing pressure as bills skyrocket.

Coat exchange will be available at Ocean Terminal and Fort Kinnaird

It brought some to tears, the enterprise said.

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Now locals are being urged to donate good quality winter coats and waterproof jackets suitable for all ages and sizes.

Founder, Sara Thomson, predicts this winter will be even more challenging for more people.

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"Heating bills are at an all-time high, inflation is on the rise. There is no doubt that the necessity to keep warm and the stress of trying to keep up with the rising cost of living will push many people to their breaking point this winter."

“We launched the winter coat exchange at the beginning of the year and sadly, here we are again. Except this time, it is even worse. Right across Scotland, there are people that are genuinely scared of what this winter may bring.

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"People who now can’t afford even the most basic essentials because the cost of living has skyrocketed. For many people, winter 2022 will be a season of crisis. But we are determined to make a difference, and we know there are countless people in Edinburgh and Glasgow that want to help too.”

The winter coat exchange aims to keep quality clothes out of landfill and in use for longer, helping to reduce the environmental impact of the textile industry.

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Coats can be dropped off or collected at The Leith Collective at Ocean Terminal, The Leith Collective at Fort Kinnaird, and The Clydeside Collective at St Enoch Centre during opening hours.