A community shop set up for the benefit of North Marston has celebrated serving its 100,000th customer.
The Shop, as it is known, reached the milestone after two and a half years’ trading. A bag full of goodies and a special clock were presented to Annabel James at a special event on Shrove Tuesday.
Alison Finnemore, who chairs the shop’s management committee, said: “It was nice that it worked out to be a local person. Annabel was really shocked when we told her, she just couldn’t believe we’d had 100,000 customers.”
The Shop, opened in July 2011 by John Bercow MP, is run by a committee of volunteers. Almost half its sales are of produce which comes from within a 25-mile radius of the shop, ranging from meat, baked goods, jams and jellies, chutneys and preserves, as well as dairy products including yoghurts and ice cream.
Mrs Finnemore said: “All the shops profits are coming back to help the village. The more people spend money in the village shop the more the money comes back in to the village.”
So far proceeds have funded a new slab pathway across the village playing fields, road safety improvements for access near the village hall and improvements to the village car park, where The Shop is located. The Shop is a wooden lodge-type building and was funded by £112,500 of grants including a £20,000 loan.
Mrs Finnemore concluded: “It is small but we have an amazing amount of stuff in it.”