People will be able to drop into a shop unit in Shrewsbury’s Darwin Shopping Centre from next Monday (7 September 2020) to find out about new ways of accessing Shropshire Council and other local services, and to tell the council how they would like to access them, in light of the coronavirus lockdown.

The ‘Shropshire Local’ shop will be located in the former Disney Store, and aims to enable people to engage with the council, and to discuss their changing needs and preferred methods of accessing local services.

The shop will be staffed by an experienced team who will be able to talk to people about how they can – or would like to – access services provided by Shropshire Council and its partners, with an emphasis on doing so online and digitally.

It will be open six days a week, from 9am to 5.30pm from Monday to Friday, and from 10am to 4pm on Saturday.

Andy Begley, Shropshire Council’s acting interim chief executive, said:

“This is a new approach to help make the council more accessible to local people and to make it easier for people to find out more about local support services and how to best access them.

“Shropshire Local will give Shropshire Council a positive presence within the community while some of our main buildings remain closed to public access. Staffed by a team capable of having conversations around local support services and the most efficient way to access them, it will offer a space for people to come and talk to us to gain information, learn something or give us feedback.? The information gathered will be analysed and will be the basis for developing Shropshire Council’s new ways of working in the future.”

It’s hoped that having a town centre presence will help people to more easily access the support on offer from the council and its partners, and improve the way that the council engages with local residents.

If it proves to be successful it’s hoped that similar Shropshire Local shops will open in other towns in the future.