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Last Updated: Monday, 21 August 2006, 13:27 GMT 14:27 UK
Vicar's new service for village
Rev Roy Taylor courtesy of Blackburn Diocese
The Rev Taylor says running the Post Office is a "leap of faith"
An enterprising vicar and his wife are providing a new service for their village - they are saving the local post office from closure.

The Vicar of Dolphinholme, Lancs, Roy Taylor, and wife Monika put their retirement home as security for the shop over the road from their vicarage.

"I've never done anything like this before," said the vicar, who also serves Quernmore and Over Wyresdale.

"It may be stupidity- let's just call it a leap of faith."

Mrs Taylor, will run the shop most of the time but the vicar will serve two afternoons a week, while she keeps open the Post Office in the village hall at Cockerham.

"You can stick a vicar in a Post Office and they'll probably do a lot better than sitting in a Vicarage," said the Rev Taylor.

"You can tick off 100 visits sitting in the shop for a day, and you'll meet people who will never darken the door of the church."

Baptism enquiries

The Rev Taylor has already had enquiries about baptisms from mothers doing their shopping who had no previous connection with the church.

One customer even discussed funeral arrangements while collecting her groceries.

Two chairs provide a meeting place for people and the shop is developing a website and expanding its tourism links in an area popular with walkers.

It is also developing a "buy local" policy, developing contacts with local vegetable growers, a farmers' co-operative providing fresh meat, and a micro-brewery.

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17 Jul 06 |  Lancashire
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19 Aug 06 |  Business

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