Clothes store update: January 27th 2020

We are accepting clothes store donations again; however, please do not turn up unannounced to The Gatehouse with donations as we may have to respectfully decline your donation. Please email us to arrange drop off and details of your donations on:


Please note: due to current lack of storage space, we regret we CANNOT take in LARGE donations of lots of CLOTHESbut donations in smaller instalments are very welcome – and needed!

Please email us first before bringing us donations if you have MORE THAN ONE CARRIER BAG FULL.

What do we need?  Here’s our regular Top Ten, but please note the current position as stated at the top if this page:

  2.  GLOVES – men’s gloves, fleece/waterproof – no ‘magic’ gloves.
  3.  Men’s trousers + jogging bottoms – sizes 28” & 32” … and also XXXL
  4.  Men’s boots, shoes and trainers
  5.  Rucksacks
  6.  New pants/ boxer shorts for men and pants for women
  7.  Deodorants for men
  8.  Shaving cream, shaving gel & good quality razors
  9.  Waterproof trousers
  10.  XXXL clothing for men or women

Please read on for information about clothes that we can use, and what we can’t.  Any questions, please email

We rely on your donations to help us support people to be clothed adequately when sleeping rough or through their journey from homelessness to being accommodated, so please keep in touch with us.

Clothes are donated to our guests.  Some of our guests are sleeping rough on the pavement in doorways, underground car parks, stairwells or in tents, in cars and vans, or boats.

Other guests are living in hostels or moving between hostels and other temporary accommodation.  Some of our guests are accommodated but have a history of homelessness. 

Almost all of our guests find it hard to make ends meet whilst others have challenges in their lives which make meeting material needs very difficult.

Clothing needs to be practical to cope with the weather and to keep people warm.  Shoes need to be waterproof.  Clothes need to be clean and in good condition.

Clothing needs to be suitable for the current season – winter.  That’s why we can’t take summer clothes.

People like to look nice and each person has their own taste in clothes; being homeless does not change this! 

Whilst The Gatehouse does not have room to store formal clothing such as suits or shirts, we like to provide a choice of good outdoor and casual clothing to help people present themselves in a way that makes them feel good, and is also practical.

What are the things The Gatehouse always needs?

Blankets (wool/acrylic – no cotton please)
Sleeping bags (new and used)
Camping mats to protect sleeping bags from wet ground
Groundsheets for camping
Rucksacks and holdalls
Waterproof trousers and jackets

Men’s boxer shorts – we’re VERY low on all sizes currently
Razors – Shaving cream + shaving gel
Belts – men’s belts; very large ones for big people would be welcome!
New hairbrushes (not used)
Tissues – paper tissues in small packs
Socks – currently only new for the Christmas appeal
Shampoo + shower gel
Gloves – fleece/sturdy gloves. (No ‘magic’ gloves please)
Candles – candles preferred to night lights
Men’s waterproof trainers + boots
Women’s outdoor/practical shoes + boots sizes 7 -8
Women’s trousers + leggings

Men’s outdoor practical coats and jackets
Men’s winter/outdoor trousers especially size 32” and 34”, and sizes 48” and 50” – and above

A special note on duvets: We go through highs and lows of duvets. Sometimes we have many and other times we have none. Please, before dropping off your duvet donations, can I ask that you email to check our current stock levels. We only ever really need single duvets with the occasional double requested. We have a VERY small store room so can only really store 5 or 6 duvets at a time. It may be that we ask you to hold on to the duvet until we have some space freed up.

Please note that at the moment we DON’T NEED ANY MORE:

WOMEN’S tops, unless L to XXXL sizes,
Women’s shoes / boots unless large sized
Socks (unless new for the Christmas appeal)
Sanitary towels and tampons
Men’s t-shirts and polo-tops
Hats – we have hundreds already
Sheets, pillow and duvet cases- these are something that are very rarely needed and we have a small stock of these already


Summer clothes + shorts (men’s or women’s)
Baby + children’s clothes
Formal men’s clothing – suits, trousers, jackets
Men’s shirts
Men’s summer trousers
Sun tan lotion; used lipsticks + used lip balm
Make up
Summer shoes, canvas shoes, crocs and slippers
Half used mini travel shampoo or shower gels
Women’s dresses

Recently, we have had an influx of children’s clothes donated amongst other things. As a charity, we help people over the age of 25 so please DO NOT donate these things to us. This creates more work for us as we have to find somewhere to donate it and also persuade one of our lovely volunteers to take it.

We also request:

– NO dirty, unwashed items or things smelling strongly of sweat, stale cigarettes – or marijuana!!
– NO ripped, damaged, moth-eaten or heavily stained items.

And yes, we have had all of the above! If you are in doubt, please email:

No – we don’t have any way of selling on donated items we can’t use.

We regularly get lots of things we cannot use but would love to be able to convert into much needed funds.   We have to sort unsuitable items, bag them up and arrange transport to charity shops. 

Can you help?

In the last year, we have had brand new, silk, chiffon dresses, designer label suits, high heeled shoes, and delicate handmade crochet throws and blankets.  These things are beautiful but they can’t be used for living on the street. 

If you have something lovely, you could use it to raise funds for The Gatehouse!   How about selling on line or organising a (retro) jumble sale (remember jumble sales? J) or arranging a ‘Swishing Party’?

Let us know if you do!

Can’t The Gatehouse just throw away or pass on unneeded items?

Items given to us which are not on our list cause us extra work.  We have to bag these up (sometimes as many as ten bin liners in one go!) and organise transport to take them to charity shops.  You can help us by keeping the need to do this to a minimum.

St Giles Parish Church Hall
10 Woodstock Road
Oxford OX2 6HT

Our entrance is:

Through the double yellow doors overlooking the Parish Hall garden just alongside Woodstock Road and behind St Giles Church, (as you approach from town).

Just go up the steps to the double yellow doors and tap on the doors.  Someone will come and open the door for you.

If you come when the Gatehouse Café is open, the doors will be open and guest and staff will be in the garden and near the doors – just ask for a member of staff and people will be happy to get someone for you.

It’s best to deliver about half an hour before the Café opens.  Once we are open it can be quite busy on the doors. 

If you can’t come before we open, you are still very welcome to deliver during our opening times.

The Gatehouse Café is open to guests:

5 – 7 pm Monday to Friday
4 – 6pm Sundays
Closed Saturdays.

Please ask for a staff member to take your donation.

In the unlikely event that no one answers the door, please try ringing the office 01865 792 999.

Please Note:  All staff and volunteers work at The Gatehouse PART TIME.  There is no one in the building outside of our main opening times and the preparation and clean up times for these sessions.

Please NEVER LEAVE DONATIONS ON THE DOOR.  Items left on the door get damaged by rain or can be stolen.

If you are bringing items collected by someone else and you don’t know what’s in the bags, please check-or ask one of our staff to check-that the items are ones that listed on this page.

There’s no parking space for The Gatehouse but you can park temporarily on the road by the Parish Hall Garden and leave a sign on your car to say you are unloading.  

There is a space between the Parish Hall Garden and the bins and bicycle racks at the back of St Giles Church which, if empty, you can park to unload.  This is parking space belonging to the Church and can only be used for a few minutes while you unload.

And lastly:

Please pass on this link to anyone interested in donating clothes to The Gatehouse: .

Thank you for offering to donate to The Gatehouse.  Our guests DO appreciate the generosity of the general public and acknowledge this support as they face the hostile challenge of living on the street.

Whilst you might be able to keep yourself clean, keeping your belongings clean and dry when it’s cold or pouring with rain can be hard on the streets.  Your donations go a long way supporting people in the uphill struggle with the elements.