Staff from the workhouse and NET charity with their banner outside the property

Workhouse appeal in Southwell helps homeless in run up to Christmas

A festive donation appeal conducted by the National Trust’s Workhouse and Infirmary in Southwell has seen an overwhelming response, with hundreds of vital items having been offered to support young homeless people in and around Newark on behalf of Newark Emmaus Trust (NET).

Newark Emmaus Trust was established to provide local, vulnerable, homeless young people with temporary quality accommodation alongside professional care, support, and training. Their aim is not simply to provide a temporary home but to give young people real opportunities in life.

The public, along with Workhouse volunteers and staff, were invited to contribute a variety of crucial necessities that can make a great difference to those who are struggling with homelessness in the local area at this time. The ‘Christmas Donation Station’ was set up on the Workhouse site in November. It saw food, clothes, and sanitary products being donated, amongst other essentials.

Nikki Burley, Chief Executive Officer of Newark Emmaus Trust, was delighted to meet the Workhouse Team as they presented the donations at The Workhouse on Wednesday 14 December. Nikki said it was a generous contribution, especially with harsh winter months ahead;

“If it were not for organisations like The Workhouse, we would be unable to provide the comprehensive support that we do for our residents. Life at NET is richer because of the generosity of the team at The Workhouse. We sincerely thank them.”

“Every day in some way, we all have a lot for which we need to be grateful. At the Newark Emmaus Trust we are no different. We owe a huge debt of gratitude to our friends for their magnanimous gesture of organising this collection of items, all for our benefit.”

“It is particularly poignant at this time of year as they too may face difficult times – but they have chosen to help others, which is wonderful.”

The Workhouse and Infirmary is committed to highlighting the history of the physical, mental, and practical needs of the poor and exploring how society’s responses to poverty has changed over the years. Janet Overfield-Shaw, Senior Volunteering and Community Officer at The Workhouse and Infirmary, said;

“The appeal shows how a place once seen as harsh and intimidating can positively contribute to the community and be used as a force for good today.”

“The Workhouse has worked on creative projects with NET in the past and we are very pleased to be able to support vulnerable young people at Christmas in a practical way.”

“The National Trust are keen to support community partnerships and we look forward to working with NET and other important organisations in the future.”

There are several ways to make your own contribution to Newark Emmaus Trust. Anyone who wishes to donate to them can do so by going to

The Workhouse and Infirmary will open again in February 2023 to inspire more people as they journey through the stories of the people who lived and worked there. More information can be found at

Posted on 15 December 2022

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Jack Woolley