A SELF-storage company is rolling up its shirt sleeves to support a fledgling social enterprise that supplies free interview clothing and advice to unemployed men across the North-East.

U Hold the Key is providing Suitability with a free self-storage unit so that the charity can store its stocks of suits, shirts, ties, shoes and accessories donated by the public, businesses and other services.

The firm is a division of the Parsons Containers Group, based in Sedgefield.

It has sites throughout the region, including Alnwick, Newcastle, Birtley, Sunderland, Bishop Auckland, Mainsforth, near Ferryhill, Middlesbrough, under the Tees flyover in Stockton and on the A66 near Darlington. The company has around 1,500 container stores, with secure 24/7 access for customers.

Early in lockdown, U Hold The Key offered free storage to charities and social enterprises during the Covid-19 outbreak.

Subject to terms and conditions, those who needed container storage had the opportunity to access up to six months of free self-storage in a container at one of the firm’s sites.

Suitability is a Newcastle-based Community Interest Company (CIC) that was set up by Darren Tate earlier this year.

It is aimed at men who are seeking employment and have interviews lined up, but do not have access to a suit or other appropriate clothing to help them feel confident.

As well as providing interview wear, Suitability also offers clients employment advice.

Mr Tate said: “U Hold The key has been able to support our ever growing stock which was previously stored in my parents’ garage and loft.

"This will support what we aim to achieve as a charity and provide us with the capacity to accept donations and support even more unemployed people within the North-East.”

Damien Murphy, managing director of the Parsons Containers Group, said: “At the start of the coronavirus pandemic, while we dealt with our own business challenges like everyone else, we pledged to do our bit to support the wider community.

"The charity sector has been particularly impacted by the pandemic, so we decided to offer some of our self-storage containers free of charge to social enterprises to give them a helping hand in these challenging times.

"There has been a lot of interest in our offer and we’re helping out a variety of charities in different parts of the North East.

"We really admire the work that Suitability does and are very happy to be able to provide Darren with a safe, secure and easy to access space to store the organisation’s growing clothing stock.”

For more information visit www.uholdthekey.co.uk, call 0800 389 4319 or email enquiries@uholdthekey.co.uk.