A CULM valley village is temporality losing its only shop just 13 months after it was taken over by two local couples.

The Strand Stores, in Culmstock, is closing on Monday (September 25) because of the closure of a main road through the village centre.

Devon County Council shut the B3391 near the Culm Valley Inn a fortnight ago to allow scaffolding to be put up for two houses adjoining the street to be rendered.

The work was expected to take up to six weeks and has left many residents to to make a lengthy detour to enter and leave the village.

The Strand Stores has seen a major drop-off in trade because of the closure and said in a social media post it was therefore being forced to close its doors from Monday.

The dog-friendly shop, which also offers a bistro and cafe in the former Culmstock Post Office building in The Strand, was only taken over in August of last year by Mark and Sheila Baker and Edward and Nicola Box.

Mr Baker is an agricultural engineer by trade and Mrs Baker a teacher, while Mr Box is a carpenter and Mrs Box a care home manager.

They said on social media: “The drop in trade over the past fortnight due to the road being closed has been significant, and in order to preserve our lovely little business in the short term, so it can continue serving the community for the long term, we have little choice but to close until the road reopens.

“Thank you for all your support so far, and we look forward to hopefully welcoming you back soon.”

They said outside catering would remain available, and all pre-booked catering would go ahead as planned.

Pre-ordered products, such as Oak Park Dairy, would also remain available, with customers allocated collection windows. 

On the store’s website the two couples state: “Our aim is to keep and maintain the provision for the local community.”

Anybody with questions about the situation or who wanted to place an order should email [email protected].