Through our Sustainable Development Fund, we have supported the development of innovative and highly successful retail and hospitality projects. These projects, many of which have gone on to win awards or develop recognised good practice, have been transformative in engendering local sense of place and community cohesion.
What was done
- Witchampton Village Shop – erect a sign on the road to bring in lunch time custom. £900 grant levered £5,000 investment.
- Maiden Bradley Village Shop – erect sign on road to bring in passing trade, refurbish interior, replace old equipment, three grants amounting to approximately £20,000 levered in over £100,000 investment.
- Tisbury Business Association – £4,750 grant award made it possible to hold the first “Tiz the Season” Christmas Market and Opening in Tisbury’s High Street (total cost £7,490). The only High Street in the AONB, it is a small collection of about 35 businesses that have re-formed a rejuventaed business network that ensures the continued development and survival of this vital local resource.
- The Drovers community pub – A small grant of £1,000 paid for plan preparation, reports and professional fees to mount a formal bid to buy the local pub and a further grant of £1,500 helped set up the share scheme to set it up once it had been purchased.
- Wren’s Shop – the village of East Knoyle turned their former bus stop into a thriving community shop. The project was stymied by additional costs that they faced principally around the creation of the Post Office without which their business plan would not work. Two grants, totalling £12,250, made it possible to finish the build and open the shop.
Essentially: the conservation and enhancement of thriving rural communities.
We have learned that small amounts of money, delivered accurately and at precisely the right time, can activate projects that go on to give long life to sustainable projects, sustaining and strengthening rural communities.
Key search words: Sustainable Development Fund, village shops, community shop, community pub
Photo Credits: Village Shop Road sign – Maiden Bradley Village Shop