ONE of the first community-run shops in Tynedale is about its celebrate its 10th birthday.

Humshaugh Village Shop was taken over by a team of volunteers in 2009, when it was threatened with closure following the post office shutting down its counter in 2008.

But local residents were not going to lie down without a fight to save their local shop, and so Humshaugh Community Ventures Ltd (HCVL) was born, a not-for-profit company which secured funding.

And from November 1, 2009, the villagers seamlessly began running their community shop.

Since then both the shop and Humshaugh Community Ventures have gone from strength to strength, with volunteer numbers having grown from 30 to 50.

The shop was just the start of HCVL’s endeavours however. In 2010 the group took over the the running of the village pub, the Crown Inn for three and a half months while a buyer was found.

HCVL directors have also been behind community projects such as annual apple pressing, community beehives, and bread making. The group has also underwritten groups and events including the Humshaugh Arts Programme, Humshaugh Publications and the Humshaugh Village Show, to name just a few. In total the shop has funded and underwritten individuals and projects with more than £60,000.

HCVL’s chairman, Dick Moules, said “Initially we thought we would need a paid manager, but thanks to our talented and willing volunteers this proved unnecessary. Consequently we have been able to fund village groups and individuals from our profits.

“I did fear that as time went by enthusiasm would wane and we would struggle to keep the shop open. The fact that we have more volunteers than ten years ago is unbelievable.”

To celebrate, volunteers will throw a party on Saturday, November 2 in Humshaugh Village Hall.