A COMMUNITY bid to buy “an irreplaceable outlet” in Dunbar has received a six-figure cash boost.

The team working to save the Crunchy Carrot for the town has been awarded more than £119,000 by the Scottish Land Fund.

The grant, which comes after a year of work by a group of residents, provides essential capital to enable the purchase of the shop premises, as well as funding a number of other requirements.

It also means the group can launch a Community Share Offer to hit the target needed to complete the buy-out of the grocer’s shop.

Isobel Knox chairs the board of Community Carrot Ltd, the Community Benefit Society recently set up to buy the High Street business.

She said: “The board are delighted to have been awarded this grant from the Scottish Land Fund: it will be crucial in enabling us to fund our community buy-out of the Crunchy Carrot for Dunbar.

“It is difficult to adequately sum up the importance of this shop in our town; it’s a social hub as well as an irreplaceable outlet for locally sourced, ethically-minded food and other products.

“We are committed to keeping it open and will work to ensure it remains the much-loved community asset that it has been for the last 20 years.

“This grant enables us to buy the shop premises as well as funding a range of other essential costs, such as hiring a development worker to establish even more Community Carrot services for Dunbar.

“We hope there will be a Carrot on our High Street for many years to come!”

The group is now able to launch the final stage of fundraising: a Community Share Offer.

Members hope to raise £50,000 to pay for the business, its stock, assets and refurbishment, in much the same way as Dunbar Community Bakery was saved for the town a decade ago.

The Share Offer launched on Saturday and runs until the end of next month, with a minimum investment of £10.

Anyone over the age of 16 can invest in shares.

The business has been a fixture of Dunbar’s High Street for nearly 20 years.

The owners of the Crunchy Carrot – Jo Gibson, Chris Eden and Sarah Wall – announced last year their intention to step down but stressed they would prefer to see the business remain in place.

A survey and public meeting demonstrated support for a community-owned business, with nearly 90 per cent of the more than 100 responses saying it was “very important” the shop remained open.

For more details, go to the Crunchy Carrot’s Facebook page.