Community in Sturminster Newton


Sturminster Newton is a pretty market town and the ‘unofficial’ capital of the Blackmore Vale. It’s picturesque 1,00 year old mill on the River Stour is seen by all those passing the narrow arched bridge into the town. Once home to Thomas Hardy and Dorset dialect poet William Barnes, Sturminster Newton is a small town with a big community.

Image by Tim Robins

“The Boutique”  in Market Cross is the renamed former “Community Chest” and contains a hoard of preloved ladies and children’s clothes and accessories.   Renamed, but the same lovely quality clothes at  fair prices. 

The Emporium recently celebrated its first anniversary as a treasure trove of items looking for  new homes.    The Emporium offers china, glass, “collectables”, kitchen ware, children’s toys, books, music and much more, including now having a Gentleman’s Clothes Boutique with it own changing-room.    The money raised from The Emporium  and The Boutique is  used for the benefit of the town – you will soon see a defibrillator appearing on the outside of the building.

Image by Tim Robins

The Emporium is  a place for rehoming and also recycling.   The plea from Shop Manager Cheryl Basten is “we want good quality goods to sell but our motto is that nothing goes to waste if we can possible avoid it.   So please – remember us when you are having a clear out.”

So if clothes and goods are not of good enough quality to sell in the two shops they are sold on for recycling.   The Emporium also saves milk bottle tops which go to a cancer charity, stamps which go to the RNIBm , batteries, bras (which go to women in the third world), glasses which are handed on to local opticians, printer ink cartridges, buttons which are put on cards for sale, old woollies which are made into gloves, broken jewellery which is used to decorate handbags.  

Image by Tim Robins

The Emporium houses a community fridge with free food for anyone who wants to help themselves…..says Cheryl “ we take surplus food from The Pantry or food shops, including produce in season from out local gardeners and most recently free range eggs.   So don’t be shy, come and help yourself and fight food waste”


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