• Bere Regis Post Office, fully decorated for Jubilee, in new location
• Shop has doubled in size after major building project in Grade II listed premises, combining empty shop next door
• Major Platinum Jubilee Street party and events outside the shop
• Longer opening hours
The Platinum Jubilee will be a chance for new Bere Regis Postmaster, Jagtar Dhesi and wife Rajwinder, to join in with the community events and to celebrate all that they have achieved at their store in the past year.
The couple took over a convenience store at 85 West Street, Bere Regis, last May.
They also took on empty premises next door as they wanted to double the size of the shop once it could be combined into one big store.
As it was a Grade II listed building, they worked closely with the planning department, for permission to remove the wall between the shops.
The whole premises has just been fully refurbished and it has just became a Nisa/Co-op convenience store.
The icing on the cake for the community was Jagtar taking on Bere Regis Post Office last month, restoring service to the community.
They have also been busy stocking the retail side of the business as they went from three small fridges to 44 modern chillers to offer a much wide range of chilled and frozen foods.
Postmaster Jagtar Dhesi, said: “The community is over the moon".
They are really delighted to have a Post Office again.
I have seen so many new customers who have come in to use the Post Office.
They are bowled over by the shop as well.
“There are many elderly people in this area.
Many don’t have transport and the bus service is poor.
People are thrilled that they don’t have to travel elsewhere to visit a Post Office, a bank or a supermarket in Poole or Dorchester as this can all be done here.
Footfall and how much customers spend in the shop has gone through the roof.
Everyone is very happy.”
A big Platinum Jubilee street party is being held in West Street right outside their shop.
The street will be closed to traffic, but the shop will remain open as normal.
The Post Office is closed on Bank Holiday Thursday, then it will be closed for two days.
Jagtar and his team have already put up their decorations and the community are getting excited about the Queen’s historic milestone.
The couple employ eight members of staff, which will mean that they can all take it turns to join in the celebrations and Jagtar and Rajwinder can meet customers and more members of their community.
One very important member of staff is Karen Merritt, who has worked in the shop all of her working life.
Jagtar said: “Karen is a local woman who started work in the shop in 1990, the whole village loves her.
She is the heart of the community.
She could retire, but she wants to stay on to serve the local community.”
Jagtar, who has been in retail for the past 36 years in various places including Weymouth and Poundbury, is very community minded.
His Nisa Store which is part of Co-op Group store is part of Nisa’s giving back to the community initiative.
Jagtar successfully applied for £2,500 for Bere Regis cemetery to plant more trees and a garden where people can sit and reflect.
The store has also contributed towards the cost of redecorating a classroom at one of the local schools.
The store’s normal opening hours are Monday to Saturday: 7am – 9pm; Sunday: 7am – 8pm.
The Post Office’s normal opening hours are Monday – Friday; 9am – 5pm; Saturday: 9am – 12 noon.