Village Shop landlord offers Hollingbourne first refusal

Hollingbourne Parish Council has been advised by the landlord of the Christopher’s Village Shop that he would like to give the opportunity of somebody from Hollingbourne to take over the Eyhorne Street shop from Christopher Rudgard who has expressed an interest in retiring in March 2017. Mr Paul Teague has contacted the Council to indicate that he is willing to consider any proposal from local interests including a “collective” in order to keep the shop going.

The requested rent is one hundred pounds per week which includes general maintenance and buildings insurance. Mr Teague writes:-

,,,,,,,, and the details I have mentioned in order to give the village as much time as possible to allow anyone or any “collective “of people to keep the shop going . Time will pass very quickly and it will be an absolute tragedy if this last shop

Is lost .  I would also like the Parish Council to make it clear that the tenants who enjoy the accommodation and all the existing access above the shop is not and will not be affected in any way at all 

Christopher Rudgard has separately said that he is happy to carry on for a month or two to help with any handover. The shop is open seven days a week and is the onl;y one between Bearsted and Harrietsham that sells groceries, newspapers, milk, sweets, and other essentials. It also has a weekly Post Office counter on Wednesadys that is operated by Headcorn Post Office. Other businesses in the Eyhorne Street Conservation Area include two public houses, a hairdressers, and an osteopath.

The Parish Council has been advised that the Bredgar Farm Shop, the only other stores between Hollingbourne Corner A20 and Sittingbourne, will close at the end of January while the food section of Paydens in Bearsted closed at the end of December.

Many villages faced with the same situation have turned their last village shop into a Community Enterprise. More details are at  http://www.plunkett.co.uk/

The possible closure of the Shop will be discussed at the next Parish Council meeting on 9th January at 7.30pm in the Cardwell Pavilion. Mr Teague can be contacted at paulteague1@hotmail.com

Pictured below is Christopher’s Village Shop in Eyhorne Street.

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