The most important piece of news is that we are very pleased to welcome a new member of staff to the shop. Those who read this page will know that as a community shop we have been operating largely with volunteers for some years. Our volunteers are fantastic and put in many hours of work to support the shop, but we have been struggling recently with insufficient volunteers to cover everything. As a result we have appointed a full time shop supervisor. Those of you who go into the shop early in the morning will know that we employ Karen Elliott until 9.30am. In addition we now have Serena Coventry starting full-time on 4 December to cover each weekday. Serena is a local person and lives in Kingsclere. We hope you will come in to the shop to welcome her yourselves (and of course to do a bit of shopping while you are in there).
The post office continues to be busy. With Christmas coming, please prepare your cards and parcels well in advance in order to miss the last minute rush. Sue Scott, who has been our post mistress for some years, is retiring at the end of December. We all thank her for her work and her company, and send our best wishes to her for her future and for a happy retirement.
Our Post Office is an important service that we provide for the community and it is well used. Because the Post Office service does not pay well, our local PO is subsidised by takings from the shop. So, if you use the PO please can we ask you to also use the shop at the same time? You don’t have to spend a lot but anything you buy will contribute to the PO subsidy and therefore help us to keep it open.
We held another successful pre-Christmas tasting morning on 18 November. Those who came saw some of our Christmas stock, along with a range of our local, high quality products. The tasting morning introduced our newly stocked range of sauces and relishes from Atkins and Potts. These proved popular, so please come in and see these new products. We are stocking a range of Christmas products including cards, wrapping paper, Advent calendars, hampers, presentation biscuits and chocolates, beers and wines.
Halloween is long gone, but thanks to those of you who entered our pumpkin carving competition. The entries were excellent and the judging was tense. In the end we decided to award the first prize of shop tokens jointly to Savannah Joyner and Elodie Mason.
Christmas and New Year shop opening: For your information, over the festive season we are closed on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day. There will be no newspaper deliveries on these days. Otherwise we are open at our normal hours.
Get into the Christmas spirit by joining us for carols in the shop community room on 12 December