Laurie Lane has raised an interesting idea. An FVA buying group would let us not only bulk buy products but also identify services where the provider can be reluctant to travel to a rural location for a single job. There may also be products where the cost of a delivery for one household is the same as for several households in the village. The web site could help us to let each other know what products or services are needed.
For example, it seems that trying to get a chimney sweep to come to our village at a decent speed and price for 1 client is not that easy. So the idea would be for members of the group to go on a visible list of people who need their chimney swept, and when we have 3 or 4 requests, we can ask for quotes and have a bit of buying muscle. We would also be able to exchange recommendations for different types of tradesmen and tap local knowledge.
The first step is to identify products or services that FVA members are interested in buying or getting delivered jointly. We also need to know who would be interested in joining a buying group.
If you are interested, please click the Comment link at the bottom of this article and tell us what sort of products/services you are interested in. By clicking the link at any time, you can see what things other people are interested in.