Great news for Malt Kiln Farm Shop fans

The bad news in June... owner Chris Lea by the site of the devastated shop. NNL-170116-142002001
The bad news in June... owner Chris Lea by the site of the devastated shop. NNL-170116-142002001

There was devastation for the owners, staff and supporters of Malt Kiln Farm Shop in Stretton-under-Fosse when fire struck in June.

Five fire engines and a range of support vehicles went to the scene after the blaze was spotted late on Sunday, June 26.

By morning the buildings which had proved such a popular destination for visitors from a wide area – plus a vital service for the surrounding villages – were charred ruins.

But the team announced they would get the pick-your-own and plant area up and running again within a matter of days.

And since then they have been able to bring a temporary farm shop into use which has stocked an increasing range of favourite products.

Alongside this a planning application was put together for a permanent replacement and this got the big thumbs-up when it went to Rugby Borough Council’s planning committee meeting last Wednesday, January 11.

The new-look shop will take up a similar area as the old one and will include the shop area, plant sales and a coffee shop.

There will also be a children’s play area accessed through the coffee shop.

When this was all put out to consultation there was overwhelming support with more than 100 letters backing the plan.

MP Mark Pawsey said: “Malt Kiln Farm is a wonderful asset to Rugby and it was a great loss to the local community when the shop was devastated by fire in June.

“Like so many of my constituents I hope to see the shop up and running again, and serving the community, as soon as possible.”

Stretton-on-Fosse Parish Council said: “The parish council support the application for the building/business to be restored as promptly as possible.

“This is a local business that the local community supports and recognises its need within our rural community.”

And Monks Kirby Parish Council added: “Malt Kiln Farm Shop is the only surviving commercially-viable retail outlet for several miles in any direction.

“The stock covers a good range with a high proportion of fresh, locally produced goods not available elsewhere. It is consistently used by many members of the local population.

“Additionally, it provides a significant proportion of local employment in rural communities where employment is scarce. It also responds to local social needs by providing a range of services to local communities, including a place to meet and exhibitions of local crafts, etc.”

Work is now expected to start on the new building in the very near future.