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After 35-year hiatus, Wingfield villagers embrace return of village shop





A Suffolk events, theatre and arts venue has opened a village shop – after an absence of 35 years.

The much-anticipated Wingfield Community Shop in Church Road, welcomed customers at its official opening on March 13.

Opened by Wingfield Barns, the project was fully funded by a £16,050 grant from the Royal Countryside Fund.

Anna Nelson, Anna Fielding-O’Farrell and Matthew Abercrombie inside the new shop. Picture: Mark Bullimore
Anna Nelson, Anna Fielding-O’Farrell and Matthew Abercrombie inside the new shop. Picture: Mark Bullimore

Anna Fielding-O’Farrell, operations manager at Wingfield Barns, said: “The opening went really well. We had a great turnout and lots of really positive feedback, which was great.

“The idea for a shop came about after we used to get passers-by coming up the drive, especially during the summer, with us not necessarily having something to offer them.

“Also, we knew there was a need for a shop in the village, as it has been without one for such a long time.”

The Wingfield Community Shop in Church Road, welcomed customers at its official opening on March 13. Picture: Mark Bullimore
The Wingfield Community Shop in Church Road, welcomed customers at its official opening on March 13. Picture: Mark Bullimore

Mrs Fielding-O’Farrell saw a round of funding being offered by the Royal Countryside Fund, which aims to assist making rural committees more sustainable and more self-sufficient, and, after submitting an application, was given the full amount she had asked for.

She said: “As part of the project, we are set to refurbish our site’s kitchen, so that we can eventually sell produce made on site, which will, in turn, help to reduce our food waste.

“In the shop, we stock everyday essentials, with the idea that we have everything customers will need to create a meal.

“So we have fresh meat, fruit and veg, dairy products, all your dried goods and also have deliveries from Stradbroke Bakery.”

The community shop project was fully funded by a £16,050 grant from the Royal Countryside Fund. Picture: Mark Bullimore
The community shop project was fully funded by a £16,050 grant from the Royal Countryside Fund. Picture: Mark Bullimore

The operations manager thanked everyone who had supported the venture and had faith in the site for seeing it through.

Mrs Fielding-O’Farrell added: “It has been a lot of work bringing everything together, but has definitely been worth it.

“Seeing everyone’s reactions so far shows we made the right decision to bring a shop back to the village.

“We would like to thank Mark Pendlington, from the Royal Countryside Fund, for coming to the opening, and the fund itself for its brilliant support.”

The Wingfield Community Shop is open Monday to Fridays, 9am to 3pm.



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