Sandford Talking Shop Ltd (‘Talking Shop’) aims to
create a space where everyone is welcome
provide a range of activities and services that meet local needs
offer a rewarding and constructive volunteer programme
build local skills particularly in growing, cooking and eating healthy food
provide the community with a source of quality, fresh, local produce
support independent local producers
run a community-owned, economically viable project with all surplus fed back into community benefit
Talking Shop is a project that brings people together. As a group we have defined how we look after each other and how we work together.
Open to Everyone: Everyone is welcome just as they are. Everyone has something to offer. Everyone has a say and a right to be listened to. We ensure it is easy to get involved. Support Each Other: We respect difference and embrace diversity. We avoid judgment. We encourage, support and take care of each other. We make time for people. We allow everyone to give what they can, when they can. We recognise every effort and contribution. Create Opportunities to Learn: We create a safe space to build confidence and skills. We enable people to share skills, knowledge and experience, in particular across generations. We build local partnerships and networks. For the Community For the Long Term: We are committed to health, good food, fair prices and environmental sustainability. We support local producers. We actively encourage growth and fresh starts for individuals and for our local economy. Proud to do the Best We Can: We provide top quality customer service, products and resources. We are valuable, relevant and meaningful for our community. We achieve the most when we work together and have fun!
To Make Sure We Can All Play Our Part:
Talking Shop is committed to:
providing a safe, secure environment
honesty and integrity
being responsible and reliable
clear structures and processes, with plenty of support
transparency in decision-making and inclusion through information-sharing, high standards and professionalism.
WINNER 'Best Community Project 2017' At the OCVA Charity Awards
Here's our History.....
Sandford Talking Shop Ltd (“Talking Shop”) is a community project through and through, showing what can be achieved through community ownership and delivery: local people working together, shaping and running something for their own neighbourhood, to meet local needs.
Talking Shop started in 2011 as a weekly market, run by local volunteers, to build the experience and raise the funds for a local shop. In a village that had lost its school, local pub, post office, this was needed as much for the social hub it would provide as for the shopping. Through the market Talking Shop created a vital focal point around which the local community came together: the original volunteer pool of 20 grew 5 fold to over 100; those volunteers, through the market, generated £20,000; that money acted as seed funding to enable the redevelopment and extension of the village hall; creating in 2015 a space with the potential to be a community shop & café.
At the end of November 2016 that potential was turned into a reality: Talking Shop opened its doors, throughout the week on a new community café, shop & local hub. This was the result of an inspiring level of community commitment, investment, energy and imagination.
Community Commitment: Talking Shop is a Community Benefit Society, supported by over 120 local shareholding members.
Community Investment: In 2016 Talking Shop ran a community share offer to open the shop. A great success, over 80 people invested, raising over £27,000.
Community Energy: 3 part time paid workers support a team of over 100 local volunteers. These include young people, retired people, people looking to build the skills to get back into work, people recovering from mental ill health; Aged 10 to 80+; Coming together from Sandford, Littlemore, Rosehill and beyond; Donating over 180 hours each week.
Community Imagination: Talking Shop offers an umbrella under which diverse groups and activities can be started up and run for the benefit of the community. Through Talking Shop local volunteers now run a bike mechanic team, a knit & Stitch group, weekly table tennis sessions, a gardening team, a monthly lunch club for the elderly, a monthly ‘Pay what you can’ Food Surplus Café and a Good Neighbour scheme Plus the community shop & café - an invaluable, welcoming social space for isolated and vulnerable residents and a convenient, well-stocked, affordable shop. And the Saturday market - now a core event in the weekly diary, a source of good affordable local produce, an incubator space for new micro businesses and a vital route to market for local producers With the support of local mental health charities, Restore and Response, Talking Shop offers supportive independent volunteering opportunities for people who might struggle in mainstream work And Talking Shop contributes to the business studies programme at The Oxford Academy, studied as a local example of social enterprise.
This is a project truly run by and for the community.