Community shop builds confident communities

9 February 2023

Written by: Lambeth Council

News and announcements

The Community Shop in Lambeth uses surplus food provided by retailers and food manufacturers to nurture stronger communities through a unique ‘three space’ model:

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Community shop builds confident communities

West Norwood’s Community Shop is an award-winning social enterprise building stronger individuals and more confident communities.

Word from the Cabinet

 Cllr David Amos, Lambeth Council Cabinet Member for Finance and Cost of Living, said “Community Shops’ membership model, offering people facing the cost of living crisis a hand up, not a hand out, has been proving to be successful and sustainable in Lambeth for seven years.”

Three space model

Perry Tole of the Community Shop said: “Community Shop uses surplus food provided by some of the UK’s top retailers and food manufacturers to build confidence, give people purpose and nurture stronger communities through our unique ‘three space’ model:

  • Community store – a place providing great food at deeply discounted prices on high street brands.The Community Shop also fights hygiene poverty by selling affordable cleaning products, toiletries, pet food etc.
  • Community hub – a place to become the best version of you, make connections, discover and explore. The Hub offers life-changing learning and development programmes.
  • Community kitchen – a place to eat, enjoy and celebrate food. Children eat here free throughout the school holidays.

    Community shop map & joining details

    Community shop map & joining details

“Each space plays a distinct role, but together they empower individuals and communities to build their own positive and sustainable future.”

Joining the community Shop community

Membership is free and open to those who live locally and are in receipt of a means tested benefit (e.g. JSA, ESA, Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support). People can join with referrals from community and statutory organisations or contact the shop to self-refer to the service. All staff members are paid employees, not volunteers – but there is an internship programme.

More information

  • Community Shop Lambeth, West Norwood, London, SE27 9PA Home | The Company Shop Group. The shop has been in West Norwood since 2016 and is the second oldest of 10 Community Shops across the UK.
  • Lambeth’s cost of living crisis pages list practical and financial support for residents who are impacted with increasing costs of living including benefits advice, warm spaces, food vouchers, Council Tax support, energy saving tips, help getting into work and more. You can find more information at

    Here for you helping hands logo

    Cost of living help from Lambeth


The Community Shop has won awards for the positive difference it makes in the community, including

  • Shortlisted finalist in the 2019 Grocer Gold Awards Waste Not Want Not category.
  • A two-time winner of the prestigious Queen’s Awards for Enterprise Sustainable Development Category
  • And in 2017, Company Shop Group was selected to represent the UK in the European Business Awards.