our story

Old meets new

Great Paxton had a shop & post office until it closed several years ago. 

How it all began...

When the village pub ‘The Bell’ was purchased from the Brewery, the new owners Simon Black and his family, vowed to try and incorporate a shop within the premises.  There had been a shop in Great Paxton for at least 50 years but unfortunately the closure of the last shop two years previously seemed set to be the last.

After some months past Simon and his family decided that it was not going to be possible to open a shop within the pub – but they were prepared to offer some of the land, at a peppercorn rent, for a Community Shop – should there be enough support for the venture.

A committee of seven residents volunteered their time to try and make it a reality.  In June 2015 a survey of the village showed there was potential for a Community shop to be a success.  The fundraising was set to begin.

Community Benefit Society status was gained first of all, and after almost three years of fundraising £50,000 was secured.  This enabled the purchase of the shop facility that is placed in the car park of The Bell.

Great Paxton Village Community Shop was opened on 18th November 2017.

To bring such an ambitious project to fruition in a small community has felt a great achievement.  History tells us that The Bell was also a shop in the 1700’s so it feels like it has come home.

This is just the start of what we hope will be a great asset to our village and its residents.  After two years of trading the shop has become a part of the village – not just for the convenience of being able to purchase the food without getting into the car to travel out of the village – but as point of information and social interaction for many clubs, societies and local business.

A community shop run by a team of friendly volunteers.

When The Bell pub reopened in 2013, the ambition was that a community shop would be next. In 2015 a public meeting was held and there was much enthusiasm for getting a shop back up and running in the village. A shop committee was formed soon after and this is where it all began. We thought carefully about what to sell in the shop and decided to do a survey to find out what you wanted. The results of our initial surveys revealed that 42% of people intend to visit the shop 2–3 times a week and 78% of you intend to use the shop on a regular basis, with an average spend of £10–50 per week. 

Our aims

  • To reduce the distance that local people need to travel in their cars to purchase everyday shopping, as well as offering items that cannot be found in supermarket chains.
  • Seek to source and showcase local produce alongside everyday items.
  • Provide a space and central point for promotion of local events, sale of tickets and more if required.
  • Most importantly – provide volunteering opportunities for young and old to meet, to learn, to laugh, and of course to shop.​
  • To strive to be a success and profitable enough to eventually support community activities within the village.​

Would you like to be part of the team?

Great Paxton shop is run by volunteers for the community.

We need you to join us and help keep our shop open! Can you spare just 2 hours a week of your time?

Latest news & events


Monday – Saturday: 9am – 5pm
Sunday: 9am – 1pm


Call: 01480 218624
Email: info@greatpaxtoncommunityshop.co.uk


Registered in 2016 under the Community Benefit Society by the Financial Conduct Authority.
Registration number: 7299