The Lion and Lamb pub in Ashton near Helston welcomed Andrew George MP to officially open its new village shop last Friday – in a portable building in the pub’s car park.
Licensees Graham and Elaine Martin have been running the Lion and Lamb for ten years and had seen the demise of the local post office and shop five years ago. Villagers have had to travel five miles into Helston for any essential items of shopping or newspapers ever since.
After approaching Pub is The Hub for help and advice, they discovered that they were able to apply for a grant from the organisation’s Community Services Fund to support the cost of a self-contained shop in a portable cabin at the of the pub in the car park. They have used the £3,500 grant from Pub is The Hub to pay for the installation of an electricity supply, CCTV cameras and ramp and step into the shop for full accessibility.
Serving newspapers, local produce and other essential and convenience items the Lion and Lamb Community Shop will be open between 8am – 12 noon from Monday to Friday; 8.30am to 12 noon on Saturday and from 9am to 12 noon on Sunday. Vegetables are being supplied by local farmers; fruit from Westcountry Fruit; milk from Mounts Bay Dairy; bacon, ham and sausages from St Ives Food and greetings cards from local artists.
The shop is being staffed by volunteers, Olivia Antoniuy and Teresa Babbage who both also work in the pub and by local resident, Karen Willey who wanted to support the venture and help it to take off.
Elaine said: “Since taking on the pub ten years ago we have witnessed the decline of services in the area for our community practically leaving us as the last business standing. We have also followed the changing nature of the leisure market and realised that long-term business sustainability has to come from diversification. We’re hoping that both the shop and pub feed off each other to maintain footfall.
“This venture would not have been possible without the support, encouragement and financial help from Pub is The Hub and their Community Services Fund.”
The photograph shows the pub’s ex-landlady from the 80s & 90s, Barbara Quinlan cutting the ribbon for the shop; watched by current landlady Elaine Martin and local MP, Andrew George.