ONE OF Coffs Harbour's oldest rag traders is going out with a bang.
After 31 years in the Park Beach Plaza complex, Sharon and John Shaw of Fella's Clothes have decided to close the doors.
But rather than put their feet up straight away after many significant contributions to the cultural, social and charitable life of the region, the pair decided on one final gesture.
"Our immediate plans are to take two years of semi-retirement and travel," Sharon said.
"We will then review and maybe get back into business.
"We have owned the business for the last 24 years of its life so it is a little sad.
"However, from sad, good can also come which is why we have auctioned our gnomes."
Three decorative gnomes have been part of the Fella's identity for use in shop displays for as long as customers can remember.
With proceeds donated to the Salvation Army, the successful bid of $1100 means Key Employment becomes the gnomes' new home.
"We have contributed in excess of $200,000 into the local region by way of sponsorships, donations and charitable works over the past 12 months," Key Employment CEO Chris Worboys said.
"By having the gnomes join the Key Employment family it's a slightly different 'donation' to assist the Salvos in their endeavours to help the disadvantaged."
Major Stephen Metcher of the Salvation Army said the donation would be a huge help for families struggling to cope with recent flooding.
Nobody knows what the gnomes think of the situation but it's expected they are content to become a talking point and help lighten the lives of Key Employment jobseekers.