Tourism signs first for Fife village welcomed  by community and village shop

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A Fife village community is celebrating the arrival of two significant additions to its street architecture.

Dunshalt Community Shop, which is a not-for-profit enterprise, recently welcomed the arrival of two VisitScotland-accredited tourist signs – the first ever to grace the village. As the first community-owned food retailer in the Kingdom, the shop has been at the forefront of the developing trend for local buyouts. This latest initiative to put the village on the map was most keenly welcomed byshop committee member Alison Crook who spearheaded the drive to install the signs.

“It is great to finally see them here,” she said. “Dunshalt Community Shop has become the cornerstone of the village. It’s where people meet, stock up on groceries or grab a bite to eat. We wanted to install the brown signs because the ethos behind the shop is to support the local community as well as catering for visitors. While we’re well known in the village, we wanted to broaden our reach and help visitors find us. That’s where the brown signs come in, but as importantly, they are also a mark of quality.”

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Dunshalt Community Shop opened its doors in 2020 and started the application process for the signposts at the beginning of 2023. The first step towards approval was applying for the VisitScotland “Taste our Best” accreditation scheme - the official system celebrating businesses serving quality food and drink using locally sourced produce.

Alison Crook and Brian Lawrie celebrate the arrival of the tourism signposts. (Pic: Mark Alexander.)Alison Crook and Brian Lawrie celebrate the arrival of the tourism signposts. (Pic: Mark Alexander.)
Alison Crook and Brian Lawrie celebrate the arrival of the tourism signposts. (Pic: Mark Alexander.)

Following an inspection which resulted in an overall quality score of 83% and a Scottish provenance score of 93%, the shop was deemed eligible to apply. The VisitScotland accreditation scheme noted that upon entering the shop it was “excellent to be able to identify… a high percentage of Scottish and local businesses which supply your produce”.

Brian Lawrie, committee member, noted: “It is not just an accomplishment for the shop, these are also the first brown signs to point towards Dunshalt. For a small community like ours, that means something.”

Dunshalt Community Shop has been supported and funded by a range of stakeholders, including the local community who took out shares in the enterprise. This latest idea was supported by the Fife Rural Development Fund which provided grant funding for the signs.

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