It’s been saved - Council agrees to buy Itteringham village shop

Itteringham shop campaigners celebrate NNDC decision. Picture: David Bale

Itteringham shop campaigners celebrate NNDC decision. Picture: David Bale - Credit: Archant

Campaigners are celebrating after Itteringham's 380-year-old shop was bought by the district council and saved from imminent closure.

Itteringham Village Shop and Post Office. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Itteringham Village Shop and Post Office. Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

North Norfolk District Council (NNDC) accepted the recommendation to buy Fairmeadow House and the shop at its cabinet meeting in Cromer on Tuesday, September 5.

The shop and gallery will be leased to the Itteringham Community Association (ICA) and the house will be let as a holiday let, managed by the ICA. As reported, the council's bid to buy the buildings had been accepted by the owners.

Afterwards, campaigner Mary Savage, who used to work at the shop, said: 'It feels fantastic.'

James Fowell, chairman of the Itteringham Parish Council, said: 'We are very pleased that the district council has looked upon us so favourably. We now have certainty and stability in the village. We have got a result that four months ago we did not think was possible.'

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Campaigner Nigel Clifford told the meeting: 'It's of historical, cultural and social importance. There cannot be many businesses in the UK that have been in operation since Charles I's day. The history of the shop has shown what the community can do when it pulls together in the interests of the wider population.'

The Itteringham village shop has been run by the ICA volunteer group for the last 23 years, and has been listed as an asset of community value.

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It was previously due to close on October 8, after the landlords of the property served a legal notice.

Councillor Norman Smith told the meeting: 'It's in the middle of nowhere. I see it as using our money to invest in the community, while at the same time making us, as a council, money.'

Councillor Georgie Perry-Warnes said: 'This is what we are for as a council. We have listened to the community which ran a great Save our Shop campaign. It seems like a win-win to me.'

Council leader Tom FitzPatrick said a satisfactory survey and valuation had been carried out.

Judy Oliver, NNDC cabinet member for corporate assets and commercialisation, said: 'The shop and house will generate income for the council and will be a prudent investment.'

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