Friends bring a local shop back to local people

Ben Mitchell and Daniel Holme.
Ben Mitchell and Daniel Holme.

RESIDENTS of an estate in Battle will finally have their local shop back three years after it closed, thanks to two old school friends.

When Dan Holmes, 26, was in the process of moving to Marley Gardens, he was pleased that his new home would be near Marley Stores corner shop.

But by the time he moved in, the shop, in Coronation Gardens, had closed.

So instead of complaining about the loss of the facility, he took matters into his own hands - and re-opened the shop.

Dan said: “I decided to see what the building was like and see how much they would be asking in rent and see how easy it would be to open it and went from there.”

The building was in a worse state than Dan had first realised, but with the help of friend Ben Mitchell, 25, who is in the building trade, the shop was brought up to scratch.

And after a year of hard work for the two co-owners, the revamped Marley Stores finally opened for business on Monday.

Although Dan worked in a betting shop for eight years, he has no experience of running a business.

But luckily help is at hand.

The former Claverham pupil said: “My parents owned a Post Office when they were younger and they did well out of it.

“And Ben’s mum used to have a deli, so she’s helping us with the food part.”

Dan said: “We are trying to make it a local store for local people as half of Battle is being taken over by the big names and we are trying to a get a local touch back into the community.

“We want to give the public some sort of service.”

The shop is open 7am-9pm Monday to Friday, 8am-9pm Saturday and 8am-2pm Sunday.