A village shop dating from 1637 which faces closure could be saved by an offer to buy it by North Norfolk District Council.
The future of the Itteringham Community Shop has been uncertain because its current owners have served notice on the Itteringham Community Association to terminate the lease and the notice expires on October 8.
NNDC will consider buying the shop and adjoining Fair Meadow House at a Cabinet meeting on September 5.
The purchase would maintain the shop in its current location, while representing a prudent investment for the Council in line with its Asset Commercialistion Strategy.
Leader of North Norfolk District Council, Tom FitzPatrick, said: “The shop is an important community asset and we see an opportunity to help secure its future hand in hand with the dedicated community group which runs it very successfully.
“There is a huge desire both locally and by visitors to Itteringham to see this shop saved and we appreciate how deeply concerned people are for its future.”
Judy Oliver, North Norfolk District Council cabinet member for corporate assets and commercialisation, said: “We believe the purchase is a financially viable step which will generate income for the council above that achievable from a cash investment. This makes sense both from the point of view of supporting one of our communities and from a business perspective.”
A spokesman for the Itteringham Community Association said: “The association is incredibly grateful to North Norfolk District Council and their officers for their interest and support. With their backing, we are very hopeful that we will be able to Save Our Shop.”
The ICA has successfully run the shop for 25 years and there is potential to expand the shop and café, subject to any necessary planning consents, into the currently unused gallery space.
Fair Meadow House is a well maintained and attractive five bedroomed period property with letting and holiday letting potential.
The proposal is to purchase Fair Meadow House and the shop, to lease the shop and gallery to the ICA and to let Fair Meadow House as a holiday let, managed by the ICA.