Gavin’s Mill is delighted to announce that it has won the “Hidden Gem” category of the inaugural Scotsman Scran Awards. The winning finalists were announced on 19 June at an awards ceremony held in the striking Platform venue underneath Central Station Bridge in Glasgow – itself a bit of a Hidden Gem!
The Mill, as it is known locally, was once the centre of economic activity in Milngavie where local farmers brought their corn to be ground by the millwheel. But with the passage of time this activity ceased, and although the Mill survived a devastating fire and was rebuilt, it struggled to retain its former position in the local community. When it was first spotted as a potential Fair Trade hub in 2016, it had lain empty for over two years and was rundown, neglected and decidedly unloved.
But a group of dedicated volunteers soon changed all that as they cleared out and cleaned up the grubby building and turned it into a Fair Trade shop and café ready for opening on 1 March 2017. Since that time much has changed at Gavin’s Mill and while remaining true to its Fair Trade roots, the shop now offers cleaning and personal care products which can be replenished at a refill station and many dry goods (lentils, pasta, cereals, confectionery, dried fruit and other baking ingredients) which can be purchased by weight in customers’ own containers or brown paper bags. No plastic and no waste. The shop also carries a significant range of environmentally friendly household products which are not easily obtainable elsewhere, as well as Scottish products and items made by local, small artisan companies.
The café has become a local legend with superb scones and cakes baked by volunteers in the Mill kitchen and light lunches are available which use organic, locally sourced ingredients where at all possible. Vegan and gluten free options are always available. And yet, despite its growing reputation in the community, in some ways Gavin’s Mill remains a Hidden Gem: still off the beaten track; still down the underpass; still a delightful surprise to new people every week.
Julie Hall, Chair of the Gavin’s Mill Business Board had this to say: This award had 9 finalists and was the only one voted for by the public, so we are delighted to win. I would like to thank all our staff, volunteers and customers who voted for us, support us and ensure we are now part of the community in Milngavie and beyond.