CAMPAIGNERS in Mid Devon are celebrating after a lifeline has saved their post office from closure.

Devon County Council has decided to subsidise Kennerleigh shop and post office and 11 others for the next three years.

Chairman of the Kennerleigh and District Community Association, Nick Gosling said: “Thanks to the council’s subsidy plan and a partnership agreement with Post Office Limited the shop has been saved. It now means business as usual.”

The shop is seen as the lifeline for the village according to campaigners.

“This is so important for a rural area like ours where one post office and retail outlet serves a large area with scant public transport. “For some the shop and post is literally a lifeline,” Mr Gosling said.

The community has come together to save the shop and post office and is still looking for volunteers to run it.

Mr Gosling said: “My committee and I thank all those who have volunteered practical and financial help. Volunteers are already helping out in the shop, but we need more to stand in for volunteers who cannot always be there.

“Thanks to Devon County Council’s initiative Sonia Andrews (shop owner) will be running a partnership service which will be open most of the time the shop is open.”

Devon County Council has identified 12 communities where the viability of the local shop was thrown into question by closing direct links with the post office. The shops will be offered grants of up to £5000 a year for up to three years.

The exact details for Kennerleigh’s package have to be decided.