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September 10, 2008

Community’s lifeline shop saved from the chop

The villagers of Tayvallich in Argyll feared for the worse when their local shop, post office and café had been on the market for more than a year without attracting any offers. Worried that the building would be sold for residential development, the community decided to act

Argyllshire Advertiser

TAYVALLICH’S ‘lifeline’ shop has been saved from the chop – thanks to the determination of local residents.

After being on the market for over a year with no offers to buy Tayvallich Shop, Post Office and Coffee Shop, locals were worried that owner Mo MacLaurin would be forced into selling the building for residential development.

So, the community decided to form a steering group to spearhead a bid to bring the business into community ownership – and were thrilled to learn this week that a funding application to the BIG Lottery Growing Community Assets fund has been successful.

Tayvallich Community Group chairman Peter Burrell said: ‘The award of £196,570 will represent a large percentage of the £280,000 required to buy and develop the business.

‘We are now able to go forward as a community – in control of our own future.’

Group member Jilly Wilson added: ‘The whole community pulled together to raise funds towards the project, with 78 per cent of households donating by personal pledge or through community events.

‘An auction night held in July raised over £9,350, and Tayvallich Gala Weekend in August raised nearly £6,000.

‘After nearly a year of business planning and fundraising, the community is finally able to take the future of vital village services into its own hands.’

The community intend to lease the business to operators John Anderson and Rosie McAllister who have experience of running their own businesses in the catering and retail sectors.