Graffham Village Shop
In 1993, the owner of Graffham's Village Shop and Post Office retired.
As the shop was part of his house, Pescod's, it reverted to a private dwelling. This left Graffham's villagers without a shop or premises.
Having enjoyed all the benefits of a village shop, Graffham's residents decided to work together to restore this vital village service.
They formed the Graffham Village Shop Association (GVSA) and raised finance for new shop premises through loans, grants, donations and by issuing shares.
By the following year, the association had raised sufficient finance to purchase Graffham's old petrol station and garage. This was converted to provide premises for the village shop and a picture framers. The GVSA leased the premises to tenants and Graffham's village shop re-opened for business in December 1994.
The shop was very successful for a number of years, but with the the loss of the Post Office it became difficult for the tenant to keep the shop going. In 2006, Graffham's village shop closed once more.
The next challenge
Not to be deterred, Graffham Village Shop Association fought back. They decided to apply for a grant to refurbish the store in order to attract a new tenant. The GVSA succeeded and, in 2008, the shop opened once again having secured new owners and a grant of £5,000 towards a refit of the premises.
Postal Services are now provided two half days a week as an Outreach service in the picture framer's shop next door.
Today the village shop continues to thrive and now stocks a wide variety of groceries, fresh fruit and vegetables, wines and gifts, as well as international and local produce. The GVSA continues to explore new opportunities to ensure that the shop remains successful for many years to come.