Digital Shopping

In March 2016 I received the following email from Rev. Andrew Schofield.  I passed it straight on to the Parish Council, for the simple reason that they had decided to invest PC funds in support of B4RN, and as there was a Broadband Hub in the Parish Hall, it seemed logical that the PC would have considered why they had invested this money and to what purpose.  Andrew’s purpose was so eminently logical I was sure that between the PC and the Village Hall, sharing a common Chairman, we would see a take up on this idea with some alacrity.

A year of inactivity having gone by maybe this is the appropriate time to shake the village tree by airing the issue again!

John Keegan

A digital shop for Whittington?

A community computer at Whittington Village Hall would make shopping accessible for everyone!

The withdrawal of bus services through the village and discussion about a village shop focuses attention on those who are not able to go shopping for themselves.

When I was a lad, my mother had a notebook in which she listed all her requirements for the week. She’d take her shopping list to our local shop and in due course the groceries would be delivered to our front door. It still happens, of course, but these days you need a computer.

With a laptop computer at the Village Hall, there could be ‘shopping hours’ when volunteers would shop online for those who aren’t computer literate. Absolutely anyone with a debit or credit card can have an online account with Tesco, Asda or Sainsbury – and for other items, with M&S, John Lewis, Argos and (of course) Amazon.

If it worked, Whittington folk could do their shopping just by walking to the Village Hall!

Andrew Schofield
Holker House

6 thoughts on “Digital Shopping”

  1. Strangely this is not minuted as having been discussed by the Parish Council at any of their meetings in 2016. I would have thought that if it had been discussed by the Village Hall Committee there would have been some feedback to the Parish Council. Must have fallen through the cracks somewhere. Of course if such a scheme was in operation there would other opportunities for those, as yet unidentified, residents who do not make use of the internet.

  2. The Parish Council is charged with the responsibility of presenting all communications to them at their meetings. Unfortunately they are selective, to which much correspondence over the years gives testimony.

    However It is disappointing that they did not at least address this matter even if they felt it was a Village Hall responsibility, which it is not. It was our money that went to B4RN therefore the PC are obliged to acknowledge correspondence from a respected churchman in our community.

    John Keegan

  3. Is this idea still under consideration, if it is who is involved if not why has it been allowed to fall through the cracks? Was it even considered by the two village organisations?

  4. A couple of weeks ago Barbara mentioned this to me. The Village Hall committee are very much in favour but are pondering the logistics.

    To be of value to people who do not have computer access what is needed is someone who is prepared to give assistance and supervise would be users.

    Could be right up you street Graham. It would, initially be an excellent adjunct to the Coffee Mornings.

    I have added a mention of this on the Village Hall Facebook page, and would take this opportunity to encourage more people to join the Whittington Village Hall Facebook Group.

    1. In his comments John makes a valid point, but in so doing he has fallen into the trap which seems to catch so many in Whittington.

      He has done this by apparently reaching a conclusion before the facts have been considered and a case made for moving forward.

      This idea was first raised nearly two years ago and it was passed to the Parish Council for its consideration. As far as I can see the issue has never been considered by the PC, the only progress that might be said to have been made is that a trustee of the village hall who is also a member of the PC has said that “The village hall committee are very much in favour ….”

      As there is no record of the idea having been passed to the Village Hall by the PC and unfortunately the Trustees of the Village Hall do not appear to publish minutes there is no way of determining who, if anyone, is responsible for carrying this idea forward and why there has been no discernible action for nearly two years.

      As to action, there is no point in promoting the idea until a need has been established. Only then can the idea be costed and if it seems to be justified, funds resourced and people found who have the skills and time which might be needed to implement it.

      At present as a community we have no idea of how many households don’t have a device which would enable them to access the internet, nor of these, how many would be interested in the possibility of joining the web community.

      Currently there is a major effort to promote village affairs through the internet but we have no idea of which households are even aware of the activity let alone who is unable to access it. A simple way forward would be to ask. It has been suggested that a notice in Wagtail would suffice which would be probably as effective as a poster for the “Breakthrough to Literacy Campaign” which read:

      “If you can’t read this notice contact …..”

      The only practical answer would be for the PC to commission and circulate a parish wide questionnaire and analyse the results. This would enable the community to identify the problem, if indeed there is one, and then to make progress.

      As I know from personal experience this is unlikely to happen with the present Parish Council.

      I would love to be proved wrong.

      Graham Williams

  5. In fact, to the best of my knowledge, this has never been discussed at a PC meeting. The reason being that the subject was actually raised with the Village Hall Committee, not the PC, by one of its own Trustees, Andrew Schofield.

    It is clear, that the matter has been discussed at VH meetings, hence Barbara’s observations to me, and presumably is somewhere on the list of priorities.

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