Plunkett Award Finalist!

We are thrilled to be selected as one of three finalists in a national competition run by the Plunkett Foundation, an organisation that supports community businesses up and down the country. The final is in London on December 5th. Fingers crossed! 

The enthusiasm … (is) infectious from this community business. Having come up with such innovative ideas in their drive to become ‘plastic-free’, they are aiming to make the community become more sustainable. It was also heartening to read how inclusive the initiatives are, deliberately aiming to involve the whole community across the entire age range. Their eco-bricking idea is brilliant and they are an inspiring initiative that thoroughly deserved to be in the mix for an award.

Christmas market

We are now getting ready for our Christmas market, held in November to enable people who start their present shopping early to see the beautiful items available on over 30 stalls. Come along on Saturday 3rd November from 10am to 3pm – it should be great fun!

Our eco-bricking workshop

We had a great afternoon eco-bricking! Young children, teenagers, adults … all concentrating hard to get as much single use plastic inside a bottle as possible. Please do join us in our determination to take plastic out of the environment – the bottles will be used to build a snake-shaped bench for local children so we need a lot of them! For an explanatory leaflet email




It is disturbing how much plastic we use on a daily basis – here are just some of the things we cannot at present recycle through Newbury District Council, but we can eco-brick!



Are you eco-bricking it?


This is an eco-brick! It’s a plastic bottle full of single use waste plastic – a way of taking plastic out of our environment. 



And this is what the eco-bricks will be used for – making snake like benches for local children to sit and run on.

On Wednesday 8th August, at 2:30pm, we are running a workshop to show how to create eco-bricks. Do come along and have a go – it is remarkably satisfying. Bring some clean and dry waste plastic with you (we will have some spare, including bottles).

All welcome, including children.

(images from


Summer Market

Save the date: On June 2nd, from 10am to 2pm, it is our Summer Market – bigger and better this year thanks to the tireless work of Barbara K and others. There will be 32 different stalls including  an environmental awareness stall run by volunteers from our community who are working to reduce the amount of plastic currently in use: come and see some of the new environmentally friendly products that will soon be in the shop.



Bluebell walk, then coffee and cake?

bluebells at Hampstead Norreys

It’s that beautiful time of year again when the woods at Hampstead Norreys are carpeted in bluebells. The woods are open to the public and are easily accessed: just ask in the shop for directions if you need them. And there is a great playground nearby for young and not-so-young with adult equipment too!

Village of the Year Competition

In March of this year we were thrilled to reach the final four of the Village of the Year – a national competition hosted by Penelope Keith on Channel 4. We just missed out on the winning slot but are proud to have done so well. The community shop and café featured heavily in the programme: Patrick Grant (judge, previously judge of the Great British Sewing Bee) described us as ‘a community shop that is so much more than a shop . . . the beating heart of the village’. Come and join us and see for yourself what we have to offer: a warm welcome, a wide range of goods, sourced locally where possible, and a lovely café with barista coffee. We look forward to meeting you. 

Now We Are Seven

Hampstead Norreys Community Shop officially opened its doors for the first time seven years ago this month, on March 26, 2011.  BBC Television was in attendance, with a live broadcast featuring Maggie Philbin, interviewing Avril, Mary and our original shop manager Julie.