Broad Chalke Services

Local Services : Broad Chalke

Chalke Valley History Festival on 2nd July 2023

Tony Patel of Chalke Valley Stores at the Chalke Valley History Festival on 2nd July 2023

Community Hub, Shop, Post Office, Public House and Watercress

Chalke Valley Community Hub Terry Jolly (secretary)
Facilities Manager
01722 780007

01722 780998
The Secretary, Chalke Valley Community Hub, Cerney Rise, Lower Gurston Lane, Broad Chalke, Salisbury SP5 5HW
Community Hub Manager, URC Chapel, High Road, Broad Chalke, Salisbury, SP5 5EH
Chalke Valley Stores Tony Patel manager from 7th May 2019 (previously Ellen Smets) 01722 780998 URC Chapel, High Road, Broad Chalke, Salisbury, SP5 5EH; website;
The Hub shop opening hours are from 9.00am to 5.00pm on weekdays and 9.00am to 1.00pm on Saturdays.
The Coffee Shop opening hours will be 10.00am to 3.30pm Monday to Friday for hot food and lunches, coffee and cakes. Saturday opening time will be 10.00am to noon for coffee and cakes with a reduced menu for lunches.
All closed bank and public holidays
5th Year Anniversary event was on 3rd June 2018.
Tony Patel took over from Ellen as manager of Chalke Valley Stores on 7th May 2019. Ellen's leaving party at the village hall was on 10th May 2019.
Post Office Ed Rigg (Postmaster at Tisbury) & CJ or Sarah 01722 780115 URC Chapel, High Road, Broad Chalke, Salisbury, SP5 5EH
Open Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays 9.30am to 1.00pm during the Coronavirus epidemic.
Note that Friday opening has discontinued.
News & Outreach Service meeting minutes
Public House The Queen's Head 01722 780344 North Street, Broad Chalke, Salisbury, SP5 5EN; website; Facebook
Watercress Keith Hitchings 01722 780142 Slate House, The Marsh, Broad Chalke, Salisbury, Wiltshire SP5 5HJ website; collection from the fridge & pay at the honesty box (a tube in the shed wall) at the packing shed at The Marsh.

Public Meetings regarding a new community shop and post office were held on 20th October 2012 at 10.30am, on 26th October 2012 at 7.30pm and on 19th April 2013 at 7.00pm in the village hall.

Health care

The Sixpenny Handley and Chalke Valley Practice 01722 780282
01725 552500
Doctor's surgery at Doves Meadow, Broad Chalke, Salisbury, SP5 5EL, a cul-de-sac near the Queen's Head. The Surgery is open from 9.30am to 1.00pm and 2.00pm to 6.00pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays. It is closed on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays but the Broad Chalke phone number is still manned.
It is closed on weekends.
Out of Hours Service: 111
Dispensary: 01725 552589
Health Visitor: 01725 552806
District Nurses: 01725 552792
Non-urgent Midwife: 01722 425185
Urgent Midwife: 01722 336262
The Link Service; Transport
Co-ordinator (West)
01722 780800 Volunteer Transport; contact Joint Transport Coordinators Catherine Gurling, Sue Fry or Terry Jolly. There is no charge, but you are invited to make a donation towards administrative costs.

A few articles about what is going on at Salisbury Hospital written by Alastair Lack, one of the elected governors, can be read on Salisbury District Hospital

Home Visiting Volunteers needed at Age UK Salisbury District (Welfare and Benefits)
Age UK's vision is a world where everyone can love later life. We know some people can face illness, loneliness or poverty as they grow older. Whatever the situation, Age UK provides support and vital services to help make later life the best it can be.
Age UK Salisbury District provides Information and Advice to local older people from our offices in town. The Welfare and Benefit Home Visiting Service provides support for those who are unable to leave their home and may be eligible for vital government benefits. Can you spare 4 hours a week to really change someone's life?
We offer full training, flexible hours, volunteer support and the opportunity to make a difference.
For further information email enquiries @ (no spaces) phone 01722 335425 or visit us at 21 Brown Street, Salisbury, SP1 2AS


Bed & Breakfast
Lodge Farmhouse 01725 519242 Hut & Lodge Farm, Broad Chalke, Salisbury, SP5 5LU
Manor Farm 01722 780230 Manor Farm, Broadchalke, Salisbury, Wilts SP5 5DW
Manor Farm Farm 07909 971038 Church Bottom, Broad Chalke, Salisbury, SP5 5DW;
Old Stoke 01722 780513 Stoke Farthing, Broad Chalke, Salisbury, SP5 5ED
Stoke Manor 01722 781260 High Road, Broad Chalke, Salisbury, SP5 5EF
The Dovecot 01722 781254 The Dovecot, Stoke Farthing Courtyard; Broad Chalke, Salisbury, SP5 5EE
The Barn House B&B 01722 781000
The Queen's Head 01722 780344 North Street, Broad Chalke, Salisbury, SP5 5EN
Barn Orchard Airbnb 01722 780456 High Road, Broad Chalke, Salisbury, SP5 5EH
Gerardstone 01722 780355 High Lane, Broad Chalke, Salisbury, SP5 5HP
The Cat & Moose Cabin 01722 780480 Susie Hatt-Cook, Broad Chalke, Salisbury; website The Cat and Moose>
Cawden Cottage 01722 718463 Stratford Tony, Salisbury, SP5 4AT
The Horseshoe Inn 01722 780474 Ebbesbourne Wake

Email addresses, tariffs, accommodation details, food and photos are on the webpages above.

Satellite View and Map; Bus, Train and Taxi Services

Broad Chalke Satellite View, Road Map and Postcode List

Bus service No. 29 Timetable from Blue Boar Row (stop L or M?), then Brown Street (stop Y) in Salisbury, (NOT from the old bus station in Endless Street) (via Odstock District Hospital) or from Shaftesbury, roughly every 90 minutes (not on Sundays) or Salisbury Reds page.

Trains to Salisbury or Tisbury from London Waterloo take about 90 minutes and the stations are about twenty five minutes away by taxi. Look up your train times here.

Classic Cabs taxi telephone 01722 710111 or 07780 578717.

Refuse Collection, Mobile Library Van, Fish & Chips & Milk

Wiltshire Council Refuse Collection   Refuse Collection Dates website; Major changes in refuse collection start from Tuesday 17th March 2020; the blue lidded bin takes more items and the black box will only be for glass and bagged textiles.

Household waste collection days will change from 28th February 2022.
Wiltshire South Mobile Library Library 01225 713706 Scheduled for every 4 weeks on Thursdays: Wiltshire South Mobile Library visiting schedules. May 9th, June 6th, July 4th, etc. Warning: USE IT OR LOSE IT.
Fish & Chip Van Fish & Chips   Thursdays 5.00pm to 6.00pm at the Sports Centre
Milk Delivery Milk deliveries   Home delivery

Wiltshire Police

Wiltshire Police Police 101 number for
Non emergency
Wiltshire Police website
with an online form to report crimes
PCSO Nicola Clarke Police Point in the URC Chapel 01380 826614 (101 ext 747442 is no longer available) PCSO Nicola Clarke ; every week (unspecified times) in the URC Chapel.
Wiltshire Messaging
Neighbourhood Alert
    sign up at Wiltshire Messaging
PC Pete Jung Reports
  • 19th May 2016: Dear All, - just to advise that there has been a report of the 'Tarmacers' in the area posing as 'Highway Maintenance' in a brand new sign written Transit Van. If seen please dial 101 straight away especially if outside elderly or vulnerable persons address, if possible get a registration too. Remember this lot will almost certainly be crooks and will rip you off. Many thanks, PC Pete
  • Crime Report 001 February 2016 (Word document; downloading may be slow)
  • Crime Report 001 January 2016 (Word document; downloading may be slow)
  • 29th January 2016: Dear All,
    I am sure many of you are probably already aware of these door to door visits from Polish either begging or flogging pictures. It is part of an organised effort and we have received many calls over the last 2 days regarding them. We have been moving them on and dealing with offences but as you can appreciate their understanding of English disappears when we approach them! Please don't entertain them and ignore their calls. It is also fair to say that we haven't had any other issues as a result of their presence. Cheers, PC Pete
  • 28th January 2016: Dear All, please be aware just had a report of an Irish male in a small white van with 2 orange lights on top in the area trying to flog generators. Needless to say - don't but it!! If you can get a reg would be great. Cheers, PC Pete
  • Crime Report 001 December 2015 (Word document; downloading may be slow)
  • Crime Report 001 November 2015 (Word document; downloading may be slow)
  • 16th September 2015: Dear All,
    I was alerted today by a resident who had received a phonecall from a company who said they were acting on behalf of the Green Deal initiative set up by the Government. This is a genuine scheme (looking at improving the efficiency of your home) but yes you've guessed it there are those unscrupulous types who want to get in on the act but are not accredited and are more interested in your dosh than your heating bills! If you should be approached and some may well want work done as there are deals to be had but are not sure - the below link will take you to the Government backed firms who are genuine. Cheers, PC Pete.
    Green Deal Suppliers
  • 1st August 2015:
    Dear All, as we are well into the holiday season I do need to point out that across the southern county we are getting hit by a substantial amount of house burglaries. These are occurring at all times ie not just at night and invariably jewellery, cash valuable ornaments are high on the list. Also they are occurring in the main whilst the home owner is away on holiday. I have no doubt that offenders are cruising around and identifying the tell tale signs of an un-occupied house. If you are going away if possible try and leave a car on the drive, put a few low watt lamps on timers (maybe the odd radio too if you have one that would work in that way). Stop paper deliveries and if possible have neighbour to at least keep an eye on your house removing post and opening / shutting curtains - anything that would give an occupied appearance.
    Regards, PC Pete
  • 12th June 2015: Dear All, just received an email yesterday of 2 lots of so called 'Driveway Technicians' offering to improve your drive for a huge fee of course. One lot in a Transit the other in a Peugeot hatch back. Please be aware and notify Police immediately if you see any such individuals 'working' on vulnerable or elderly persons property. Cheers, PC Pete
  • 12th May 2015: Dear All, we have noticed a bit of an increase in heating oil theft across the area. The gentleman that wrote this document is a resident in Netherhampton who has been targeted twice in as many months. He has compiled a letter with some sensible advice that he would like to share if you rely on oil for heating. Regards, PC Pete
    Dear Neighbours
    Please excuse the omnibus address. Pete Jung has kindly offered to send this message on his standard distribution list in order to reach as many of you as possible.
    Moira and I recently returned from holiday to discover that we had lost nearly a full tank of domestic heating oil, about 2000 litres. We reported the loss via 101 and received a visit from Pete Jung. We also informed immediate neighbours. They had not observed anything which could assist the culprit(s) to be identified. This type of theft is most commonly carried out by deploying a hose from the back of a van and using as small mobile pump to transfer oil into drums inside the van parked in the road. If disturbed by the occupant, the thieves can cut the hose and make off in the van.
    Our thoughts have turned to preventing a recurrence of the incident. We would like to share with you the following measures which were gleaned with the advice of Wiltshire Police and our friendly oil delivery driver. Incidentally, he and his colleagues are drilled to watch their rear view mirror for any sign of a vehicle following to observe the deliveries.
    The most practicable preventive and mitigatory measures for domestic premises appear to be:
    1. Having gate or fence to prevent unwelcomed access to the oil tank.
    2. Bright security lights triggered by motion detectors covering approaches to the tank, preferably placed out of easy reach. Talk to your neighbour before installing and when setting up.
    3. A sensor inside the tank which will sound an audible alarm if there is a sudden drop in oil level or removal of the filler cap.
    4. If the tank does not have a sensor, checking your oil consumption regularly to detect any sudden unaccountable loss.
    5. Promptly reporting door knockers and vehicles and pedestrians who use the road through the village who appear suspicious. Wiltshire Police are quite happy to follow up reports which, to be helpful, should include vehicle make, registration number, time and other factual information.
    6. Letting neighbours know when you plan to be away from the home.
    7. Order part loads of oil rather than full loads, but make sure you monitor consumption.
    8. Check your household insurance policy to confirm that oil theft is covered.
    We received mixed advice on CCTV cameras for domestic premises. They may act as a deterrent. However, a hood or similar head gear will allow thieves to carry out the crime without revealing their identity. Also , only the more expensive CCTV systems include infra red imaging sensors which will work at night.
    There are two schools of thought on locking oil tank filler caps. It certainly creates a barrier and deterrent. However, thieves can drill or cut a hole in a tank which then would require the home owner to replace the tank as well as the lost oil.
    Apparently, the recent drop in oil prices has seen a significant reduction in this type of crime. So please do not let this note engender undue concern. Hopefully, the above information may be helpful to you.
    Our best wishes to you all.
    Douglas and Moira Coleman
  • 17th July 2014: Dear All, please note our new non-urgent number 01722 438981 to contact us at Wilton (101 ext 747442 is no longer available). Remember this is just to contact us locally at Wilton and is not monitored outside of this office. If you need to contact Police and need a response sooner that is not an emergency please continue to use 101 in the normal manner. Naturally in an emergency is 999. Please pass this number on to anyone else you think would benefit especially family and friends without email.
    Any questions let me know,
    Regards, PC Pete
  • 19th September 2013: Dear All, I'm sure you have all received various scams via email over the years - just to reiterate the reporting process which is very straight forward. Once you receive the scam email you go to Action Fraud by going to their website -
    Once you have reported it you are given an email address in which to forward the scam email to. This is then centrally collated and investigated as of course these scams are world wide.
    Save the link to your favourites as you know the scams won't stop!
    Regards, PC Pete
  • 21st August 2013: Dear All, there has been a marked increase in alarm companies cold calling to make appointments for their sales reps to come round and sell their wares. I've just had one called SSH Fire & Security Ltd. This is a legitimate company and have very persuasive sales reps. I have been advised that this company were quite keen to promote their affiliation with Police and Council (despite their statement at the bottom of their website to the contrary!) This of course is not the case. They also make a great play on the fact that you will receive special priority from Police through their company but of course all alarm calls are treated in the same way. They may also introduce themselves as conducting an awareness campaign as seen in the media - of course doesn't say which media. Basically they aren't doing anything illegal but being very cute with their sales tactics - could possibly border on a Trading Standards issue rather than criminal.
    As this seems to be very common please be aware and advise any elderly relatives, friends who could quite easily be taken in by these people.
    Regards, PC Pete
Police Shed Security Advice Garden Shed Security (may take a little time to download).

police logo

Wiltshire Police has changed its non emergency number to 101.

The 101 number is being introduced nationally in phases and on 19 September it was launched across forces in the South West, including Wiltshire.

Although 999 is a well recognised number to report emergencies, the 2010 British Crime Survey found that only half of the public knew which number to call if they wanted to speak to their local police about policing, non-urgent crime and anti-social behaviour.

Wiltshire Police's Head of Contact Management, Chief Inspector Charlie Armstrong, said: "Changing our non emergency contact number to 101 makes it much easier for people to contact us. It is easy to remember and will be used by all forces across the country by the beginning of 2012.

"We are constantly looking for ways to build on and improve our service to the public and this change is a positive one that we are confident will be welcomed by our communities."

Wiltshire Police Authority Chairman, Christopher Hoare, said: "The introduction of 101 provides the public of Wiltshire and Swindon with an easier number to remember for contacting Wiltshire Police.

"Calls to 101 are automatically directed to the nearest police force, so I can assure the public that calls from Wiltshire will be answered by Wiltshire Police staff."

Calls to 101 cost 15p per call, irrespective of how long that call may last. This applies to landlines and mobile phones.

People with hearing or speech impairments are able to use the non emergency textphone number 18001 101.

The 101 number replaces the existing non emergency number (0845 408 7000) for Wiltshire Police. The 101 number should be used for all non emergencies such as: reporting a crime, contacting local officers, getting crime prevention advice, making an appointment with a police officer or making us aware of policing issues in your area.

It does not replace 999, which should be used in an emergency, such as when a crime is in progress, when there is danger to life or when violence is being used or threatened.

To find out more about 101, visit the Wiltshire Police website or look out for posters and flyers that have been distributed countywide.

Wiltshire Police Wiltshire Police have set out future plans of policing in Wiltshire, in line with the requirement to save up to £15 million over the next four years due to cuts in funding in the Policing Plan.
Police and Crime Commissioner An information site about the first ever Police and Crime Commissioner for Wiltshire has been launched. The area on the Wiltshire Police Authority's website - - includes details about the role and responsibilities of the Police and Crime Commissioner and how they will be scrutinised.
Much like the previous police authority, the Police and Crime Commissioner will be responsible for overseeing Wiltshire Police on behalf of all residents in the Force area. They will represent people living across Wiltshire and Swindon.
The Wiltshire Police area Police and Crime Commissioner will replace Wiltshire Police Authority, the group of 17 councillors and independent members who used to oversee Wiltshire Police.
You can find out more about Police and Crime Commissioners on the website As well as information about their role, it includes a news section and links to useful documents and other websites.

Trade Directories

Please ask the Broadsheet Management to send you a copy of THE BROADSHEET or the Broad Chalke Phone Book.

Artist and Engraver, specialising in landscapes

Howard Phipps Engraver 01722 718294 Hillfield, Homington Road, Coombe Bissett, Salisbury

Community Shop and Post Office
(now known as Chalke Valley Stores)

There were Public Meetings on 20th and 26th October 2012 and 19th April 2013 in the village hall regarding the establishment of a new community shop and post office as part of the Community Plan.

The proposal is to create a community shop and post office (now known as Chalke Valley Stores or the Chalke Valley Community Hub) on the ground floor of the URC Chapel as Robert Fry is retiring at the end of May 2013. The existing Worship area will be used as a café during shop hours and also occasionally when the shop is closed. There will also be the existing Fair Trade items for sale, the office used by the police and Church benefice office and Village Archive on the balcony. Contact the Secretary, Chalke Valley Community Hub, Lodge Farmhouse, Hut & Lodge, Salisbury SP5 5LU telephone 01725 519242 or the Stores Manager telephone 01722 780998 or A Truluck telephone 01722 780562.

The Chalke Valley Stores website is

Planning Application Details. Planning permission for a change of use was granted on 15th January 2013. Search for S/2012/1653.

Planning Application Documentation gives links to plans and elevations, etc.

Supporting Documentation including a full description of the proposal with sketches and funding methods (PDF file).

NOTE: A major grant of £91,734 from Sowing Seeds (DEFRA) has now been received and building works started on 25th February 2013 and the opening date for business was on 3rd June 2013. The official opening by Sir Terry Pratchett took place on 22nd June 2013 at 11.00am.

Progress photos and Official Opening photos of conversion of part of the Chapel into a shop

March/April 2014: Chalke Valley Stores has been named as joint winner of the Countryside Alliance South West Region Award and national winner for Village Shops & Post Offices.
The Community Hub secretary, Michael Roe, said "As joint Regional Winners, Chalke Valley Stores had been entered as a UK Finalist but with little, or no, expectation of winning the national title. The judges, however, had taken a different view and the shop and post office was named as the best rural shop in the United Kingdom - less than a year after it opened - and against the stiffest competition."
The Telegraph published an article on 20th April 2014 which had two paragraphs relating to Broad Chalke:
The South West winner in the Post Offices and Village Shops category in this year's Countryside Alliance awards or "Rural Oscars", which are sponsored by The Daily Telegraph, was Chalke Valley Stores in Broad Chalke, near Salisbury. Here the church is a village shop, which turns over £1,000 each day, as well as the parish office, a café, a Knit and Natter for older residents and the local community police constable's office. The local architect, lawyers, and all the professionals needed for the project gave their services free.
Let's follow the example of Broad Chalke, acknowledge that our forefathers intended these great buildings to be more than places of occasional worship, and make our churches once more the centre of our rural communities; if God is angry then I am sure that the thunderbolts will not be long in coming. Chalke Valley Stores has not been hit by one yet.
Ellen Smets, the shop manager, supported by a small party of hub volunteers was invited to the House of Lords on Wednesday 30th April 2014 for the achievement to be recognised and to meet the DEFRA Secretary of State, Owen Patterson MP, along with Kate Hoey MP, Baroness Golding and Baroness Mallalieu. The Chalke Valley team was joined there by John Glen, local MP and longtime supporter of the project.
A further Telegraph article featuring interviews with photos of the hub, shop, police and archive personnel on 17th April 2014 was published on 3rd May 2014.

My minutes of the public meeting on 19th April 2013 at 7.00pm regarding a new shop and post office.

The total cost is estimated to be £163,000 and a major grant of £91,734 from Sowing Seeds (DEFRA) has now been received. Pledges for funding from individuals have now been called in.

Building works started on 25th February 2013 and the opening date for business will be on 3rd June 2013. The official opening will be on 22nd June 2013 at 11.00am.

The Chapel balcony has been extended slightly to give more area for the office and Archive and it allows space underneath for a Vestry and a cupboard for tables and another cupboard for the Knit and Natter Group.

The opening hours will be quite long for a few weeks, such as 8.30am to 6.00pm and Saturdays 8.30am to 4.00pm to see what times are busy and the hours may be cut later to suit the useage. The post office will be the same opening hours as at present (Monday, Tuesday and Thursday mornings 9.00am to 1.00pm) and will be run by the manager of Fordingbridge post office for about six months until a replacement is found.

There will be two shop managers: Ellen Smets will be front-of-shop Retail Manager and Coffee Shop Manager and Nigel Tinkler will be Hub Manager for back office organisation.

There was a separate meeting for volunteers where the principles of good shop management were explained. Hands-on training sessions of about two hours will follow soon.

My minutes of the public meetings on 20th and 26th October 2012 regarding a new shop and post office.

The current plan is to use the Chapel ground floor office and the adjoining meeting area (currently used for selling Fairtrade items) for a shop and post office area, with a wooden floor instead of the carpet. The dividing screen between the office and the meeting area will be removed but otherwise it will be untouched structurally. Counters and shelving and probably a glazed screen for the post office will be added. If the shop is closed a rear entrance will be used for worship, meetings, teas, Christmas Fairs, etc. in the worship area.

The existing worship area will be used as a café when not used for worship and will have a servery counter where the organ now is and a serving hatch through to the existing kitchen. This area could also be used as a meeting place for teenagers. (Comment: I would be a bit concerned about rowdy or noisy behaviour and also the security aspects being close to the shop, post office and archive when those areas are closed if the teenagers aren't supervised. In April 2012 I saw two children jump on my namesake's grave and they broke off a large chunk from the corner which cost me £240 to repair.)

The benefice and police office will move up onto the balcony and be divided from (or possibly share space with) the Archive.

Parking has been discussed with Wiltshire Council and a layby may be constructed opposite the Chapel. This would also assist bus passengers who presently alight onto soft wet grass.

The estimated cost of the initial alterations is £32,000 plus a grant of £83,000 from DEFRA. The Prince's Countryside Fund may also provide a grant. The stocking and fitting out of the shop and post office will need about £35,000 so the cost to the community will be about £67,000. Four methods of funding were set out:

  • Shares at £10 each, only carrying one voting right however many shares are bought. The shares will have no dividend, will not rise in value and be untradeable (and presumably only saleable to the issuer who would resell them).
  • A loan without interest for a short term.
  • A long term loan at a low rate of interest with a loan guarantee provided by the Cooperative Society.
  • Donations.

Estimated shop turnover is £150,000 to £200,000pa (£500 to £600/day for a six day week).

An Industrial Provident Society will be set up to manage the shop which will pay a lower-than-market rent to URC Wessex. The shop will be non-profit making; any profit will be ploughed back into the shop or other local activities. There will be a full time manager and volunteer assistance. The parish council will not contribute to the running costs or rent as there will be no funding increase available from Wiltshire Council.

The Chapel and Church already have a sharing agreement for marriages and funerals so it is not expected that these will conflict with shop opening hours.

The post office is expected to open three mornings a week unless demand warrants an increase. The post office will continue to be managed by the Fordingbridge Post Office as an Outreach Service and Sue Fry may continue to run the post office until soon after the move.

A footpath from the Church path to North Street is also being considered.

Post Office News (2008/2009 meetings)

Latest News from the Post Office leaflet in the post office. The Broad Chalke post office will be open on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9.00 am to 1.00 pm with an Outreach Hosted Service. [2013 Note: it is now open additionally on Friday mornings.] It started this new service on 8th September 2009. In the run-up to Christmas it will be open on Thursday afternoons from 2.00 pm to 5.00 pm and on Saturday mornings from 9.00 am to 1.00 pm.

The same range of services will continue to be available with the addition of DVLA facilities. Customers will still be able to collect benefits in cash using the everyday banking services or the Post Office's card account.

Local Public Consultation to determine the precise services to be provided continued until 20th May 2009 but you could still contact FREEPOST CONSULTATION TEAM (no stamp required) or telephone 08457 223344 or Textphone 08457 223355 or email to contribute your views.

Sue Fry will continue to be our postmistress. [2013 Note; Richard James is now the principal postmaster assisted by Sue Fry.]

Previous News from The Broadsheet February 2009:- An Outreach Hosted Service with reduced hours of 11 hours per week operating from the same cubicle in the Village Shop is still The Post Office's preferred option but at the present time two potential Core Sub Postmasters have turned down the opportunity to administer the service. The Post Office agreed to check whether the recent business levels justified more than 11 hours per week. The service will continue as normal until further notice.

November 2008 News from The Broadsheet November 2008:- The Post Office plans to offer a full service (including Motor Vehicle Licences) for three sessions per week at the present post office counter in the shop, starting in the New Year. In essence customers will continue to enjoy the full range of Post Office services but for fewer hours per week. If the level of business justifies longer hours at some point this may be possible. The core Manager at Sixpenny Handley will be in charge but it is not known yet whether Sue Fry will be employed as the person actually operating the service. It will probably be three mornings a week, similar to the Hosted Outreach Service.

Old news:-

Extract from The Post Office's decision 22/02/08 in the West Berkshire and Wiltshire decision booklet:-

Post Office® Broad Chalke branch
Respondents raised a variety of issues during the local public consultation in relation to our proposals for this branch. Respondents raised concerns in relation to the possible impact of closure of this branch on vulnerable customer groups, in particular the elderly, since there is no direct bus service to alternative branches. The additional cost required to travel, the distance involved and risks associated with accessing alternative branches were also concerns raised by respondents. Respondents commented on the environmental impact of car journeys to alternative branches and a petition opposing the proposed closure was also submitted.
Having regard to all comments received during the local public consultation and all other relevant factors, Post Office Ltd has decided to proceed with the closure of this branch and to replace it with an Outreach Service. The proposed outreach service will be subject to a further 6 week period of local public consultation. Details of this consultation will be announced shortly.

Many people in Broad Chalke have received an email from Robert Key MP as follows:-

Yesterday afternoon I was contacted at The House of Commons and informed about all the closure and outreach proposals in our constituency. I immediately spoke by telephone to the Post Office consultation staff to express my grave concern about the Broadchalke proposal. Once again, the business case is secret. However, I was told there is a choice of two alternative ?outreach? locations in Broadchalke. I argued strongly for the status quo ? and I think I convinced the official. Now she must convince the others.

If I may suggest it, the first thing to ensure is that Sue Fry wants to keep the business in the shop. If she does, then we all need to say so, loud and clear, to the PO.

Best wishes from Robert.
Robert Key FSA
Member of Parliament for Salisbury
House of Commons
London SW1A 0AA


The extent of an Outreach Service is subject to consultation but we already know that a Hosted Service cannot be more than 12 hours a week so if the status quo is not maintained then the pressure will be on to persuade a shop, public house or other business to provide a Partner Service with longer hours.
8th March 2008: Essex County Council have offered to buy all the post offices in their area in order to keep them open; I wonder if Wiltshire County Council will offer to do the same?
8th May 2008: The six week extended consultation period has now been exceeded and no decision has been made, but it seems that there are discussions on how the village shop could operate a revised form of Partner Outreach Service which would retain the separate post office within the shop like it is now, rather than have the service operated by the shopkeeper from the shop counter.

Even older news:-

Post Office Ltd has reviewed Wiltshire post offices with the intention to close some of them. The review finished on 10th December and the impending closure was discussed at the Parish Council meeting on 12th December and there was a public meeting on 9th January 2008. See this report in the Salisbury Journal dated 12th December 2007 which states that it is proposed to replace the post office with Outreach services.

Outreach is a means by which Post Office products and services are provided by a 'core' subpostmaster (who already operates a post office branch in a community) to outlying communities.

As part of the Area Plan for West Berkshire and Wiltshire, Post Office Ltd is proposing to close Broad Chalke post office branch on a permanent basis and to mitigate the impact of the proposed closure we propose to put in place an Outreach service point for 11 hours per week.

There are four types of Outreach service: Mobile, Hosted, Partner and Home. Letters commenting on the proposals must be received by Post Office Ltd by 31st January 2008. Consultations will then take place and a final decision will be made about 22nd February 2008. The chosen Outreach service is due to start on 1st April 2008. The Hosted or Partner service is currently proposed by the Post Office.

The Mobile Service is a travelling post office situated within a van operated by the core subpostmaster or his assistants that will visit small communities at set times and days each week to deliver certain Post Office products and services to customers.

The Hosted Service is a fixed site post office from which the core subpostmaster or his assistants transact certain Post Office products and services during restricted hours each week. The premises are owned by a third party, for example, a shop or community centre. Eleven hours per week has been offered, the services will be more restricted than they are now and the "core subpostmaster or his assistants" is unlikely to be the same person as we have now. It is understood that twelve hours a week is the maximum for the Hosted Service. The Partner Service is recommended for more than twelve hours a week.

The Partner Service is a fixed site post office where a local partner (such as a pub landlord) appointed by the core postmaster, transacts certain Post Office products and services from the partner's own premises during the opening hours of the business. In other words a shop or pub owner could provide the services. It would be run from the shop or pub counter as part of the normal shop or pub business. The shop or pub personnel would undergo training and use a simplified Post Office computer on the counter.

The Hosted and Partner Services would both provide cash and paying in services and basic postal services but not special delivery and would not take parcels over 2kg.

The Home Service is a service for very small communities whereby the core subpostmater delivers a range of Post Office products and services which are ordered over the telephone by customers.

Coombe Bissett post office is likely to become a Partner Service in the shop there. Post Offices in Wilton, Tisbury, Fovant, Dinton, Fonthill Bishop and Sixpenny Handley have not been included in the proposed changes but none of these is on a bus route from Broad Chalke and all have difficult narrow roads and steep hills on their routes. Parking will be difficult at Coombe Bissett if that post office has traffic from elsewhere in the Chalke Valley.

See the Save Broad Chalke Post Office website for details and a petition that you can sign.
Objections should be sent to
Tim Nickolls, Network Development Manager, Post Office Ltd., FREEPOST CONSULTATION TEAM
Mr Robert Key, MP, 12 Brown Street, Salisbury SP1 1HE

My minutes of the Post Office public meeting on 9th January 2008

A public meeting was held in the Village Hall on 9th January 2008 chaired by Tom Hitchings, chairman of the Parish Council. Tony Deane, our County Councillor, attended and also Anne Carney of Cranborne Chase AONB (the Local Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty). Post Office Ltd did not send a representative and Robert Key MP was unable to attend. Tom said that Post Office Ltd had apparently not received a letter from the Parish Council and as the only contact address available was FREEPOST there appeared to be no way of contacting any specific person or hand-delivering a letter. The hall was full with a few people standing; about 180 people in total. I only saw one person obviously under age 50; the vast majority seemed to be over age 65.

Sue Fry, who runs our post office, outlined the Hosted Outreach Service proposals of eleven hours a week and the possible reduced service including no special delivery and no parcels over 2kg. A Hosted Service could be in a hall or community centre but the shop provides the best location for us.

If the Partner Outreach Service was chosen a shop or pub manager here would be under the supervision of the "core subpostmaster" at Tisbury and need training to use a simplified Post Office computer terminal.

Broad Chalke has about 637 residents and the total population of the Chalke Valley villages excluding Coombe Bissett is about 2000. About 260 people use the post office each week and Sue works 26 hours, an average of six minutes each. If the Hosted Service of eleven hours is forced upon us the average time for each person would be two and a half minutes and there would be no scope for increasing numbers in the future.

Sue said that although three post offices in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire had managed to escape their proposed changes, this did not mean that three others elsewhere would need to be added to the list to maintain the level of cost saving, nor that we had a better chance because three others had managed to escape the change. Each office would be considered on its merits and one of the key considerations was that no one should be more than three miles from a post office.

We need to emphasise to Post Office Ltd the fact that our post office is the only one along over thirteen miles of the valley and travel to others is along narrow roads with steep hills and that there is no bus service to any except Coombe Bissett which would be well over three miles from villages further up the valley.

The representative of AONB said that we should make Post Office Ltd aware of the demographics of our area. We almost certainly have a higher than average proportion of elderly residents who would probably have difficulty travelling to another post office.

It was emphasised that Post Office Ltd is primarily concerned with the financial implications and political, environmental or social aspects will have little weight.

Post Office Ltd have not shown any inclination to consider any options other than the four Outreach Service options. However, as a last resort the Parish Council might offer to reimburse the loss. No figures are available but it is estimated to be about £6,000 per annum. If this was raised on the two thousand residents in the chalke valley via Parish Council tax it would only be about £3 each per annum. Bearing in mind that most people would travel to another post office by car if our post office happened to be closed when they want to use it, spending £3 on petrol each week, the carbon footprint benefits of keeping our post office open 26 hours a week are clear.

Queen's Head on 12th April 2021

Queen's Head on 12th April 2021

Ellen Smets and Chalke Valley Stores at Bishopstone Bish-Bash on 11th June 2016

Ellen Smets and Chalke Valley Stores at Bishopstone Bish-Bash on 11th June 2016