In the current COVID19 crisis, it is even more challenging to get the new Aston Community Shop up and running, but rest assured we are still working on it. Our priority is to make sure that everything we do, both in preparation for the shop opening and once it is operational, complies with any social distancing restrictions in place at the time, protecting our customers and also the volunteers in the shop and behind the scenes.
The current situation is that the Aston Community Store CIC (Community Interest Company) has been formed and is about to sign the lease for the premises. As soon as we can, we will then work on preparing the shop space, including installing some new equipment and features. We will open as soon as the premises is ready but unfortunately we can’t yet say when this will be.
Thank you to all the people who have contacted us in the last month and indicated the hours that you could offer for serving in the shop. To open for the hours we would like, we need many more volunteers, so please consider joining us. In addition to the people who have been in contact so far, it will be fantastic to hear from anyone new who can spare some time to serve in the shop or help in any other way. A few hours every week or fortnight would be wonderful.
If you have not yet got round to it, please visit <PLEDGES> and complete the relevant form for your time and / or financial support.
Your financial pledges can now be paid into the shop’s bank account (see the Bank Details tab alongside). We are preparing the paperwork for shareholders, which will be available to collect from the shop when it is open. If you haven’t already done so, visit the Aston Community Shop ‘Pledges’ page to confirm your commitment. Thank you to those people who have already done this.
We are also seeking additional financial pledges from anyone who feels they can support the project. The more funds we have for the refurbishment and to get the shop up and running, the better the shop will be for the whole community – well-stocked and convenient, and an inviting environment in which to browse and buy, which
we hope everyone in and around Aston will do.
The legal bit
Aston Community Store CIC has been created as a community interest company in order to take advantage of beneficial tax treatment available to companies which function primarily to support and enhance community life. The intention is that this will give the project the best chance of thriving and being able to continue to operate and ideally grow its business offering in the long term. Pledgors should be aware that there are restrictions on the ability of CIC companies to distribute profits to shareholders, and that consequently the majority of any profits that the company makes will be reinvested into the community. Whilst your pledge will give you shares in the company, which you may be able to sell, we recommend that this project is seen not as a financial investment but as an investment in your community and in the collective village life of Aston, Cote and the surrounding area.