May Update - Bledington Community Shop


 “A quiet revolution is taking place in villages across the countryside,” writes Clive Aslet, editor of Country Life in its Easter edition – and he should know!

After a difficult time at the end of the 20th century, he argues communications really are improving – well, in Bledington we may not have fibre optic cable yet, but even BT has managed faster broadband.  As systems improve villages are again becoming places to work as well as sleep.  And the spirit of village cooperation is reviving too.

The Woodstock-based Plunkett Foundation – with which BCSL works closely – points to Post Office facilities, cafes, and meeting spaces among areas where villagers are doing it for themselves.  And, says Aslet, despite the threat of supermarkets (and we would add online shopping) the village shop is beginning to regain its place.

To safeguard and revitalise village life in Bledington and surrounding communities – this is the vision BCSL, and all who support it in whatever way, are working to realise.

We are well on the way

So for us, having raised £100,000 and with over £140,000 still needed, we continue to seek funding to get us up and running.  This month will see submissions to 3 potential agencies, in particular to the Big Potential.  This programme helps groups like us strengthen our business case and prepares us to be able to raise substantial sums through a variety of schemes, including tax efficient shares, loans, and others.

More people are getting involved

Many villagers continue to make important and needed contributions.  Hearty thanks those who have helped keep the site looking tidy and especially to Caroline Bond, who has succeeded in enlisting 20 new members to BCSL in recent weeks.

And a message to all new residents in Bledington – you are very welcome to learn more about the efforts to establish a community shop in Bledington and to become members.  More information and applications forms are on the website or call/email Michael or Robin below

What’s next?

May 14th, 5pm at the shop site, “Pimms and Seeds” as part of the 25x100 challenge.  Enjoy a glass of Pimms while you swap seeds and plants for your garden.  This is a must-do for all gardeners

Two dates for your diary at Chastleton coming up –  May 26th and 27th.  Your offers of cakes and your time will bring a real boost to our fundraising this summer. For help or more information  Please contact Louise Angus

Saturday's Chastleton raised nearly £700 and one of our star bakers even received an offer of marriage for her rubarb upsidedown cake. 

If you could bake, share a couple of hours (catching up on village gossip) or get offers of marriage, please conatct Louise Angus on 01608 658 464.  We really do need just a bit more help and you could make all the difference.

Yours sincerely


Michael and Robin McCulloch
Joint Chairmen
01608 658 941

PS1:  Ways to use the Bledington Shop number 8:  coffee with friends after the school run.

PS2:  look out for the £100 challenge.  This is a great event with more and more people getting involved. Check out The 25x100 Challenge now.


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