Ringing success for phone box store
Published 24/07/2010 | 13:12
Residents in a tiny village are fighting back against the decline in rural services by successfully opening a grocery store in a disused phone box.
The "store" in Draughton, North Yorks, has been up and running for two weeks and is operated according to the "honesty box" principle, with residents leaving payment for any goods they take.
The community was left without access to basic items after the post office closed following the retirement of its owners in 2008.
Lewis Cooke, who runs a newsagent in nearby Skipton, continued to deliver newspapers and other items on to the porch of the shop so residents could come and collect their goods.
But after BT made the derelict phone box directly outside the former site of the post office available for just £1 last year it was decided the parish council would buy it and make use of it.
Mr Cooke's wife Anita said: "It is early days yet, we have only been up and running a couple of weeks, but so far we have only had good reports from people using it.
"People can ring us up with their requests and if we have got it will will drop it off at the kiosk the next day with their newspaper.
"It is handy for the elderly who can't always get to the shops easily and we hope it will be especially useful in the winter with the bad weather."
She added: "It is a close-knit community and everybody gets on."
The kiosk has been adapted to include a shelf to hold newspapers and groceries such as jam, milk, tea bags, sandwiches, butter, cheese and biscuits.