Binalong locals Ali and Ben Spencer were born and bred in the village and have recently decided to give back to the community they love.

The couple who still reside in Binalong has started a new venture in life by opening the Binalong Rural Store at 23 Fitzroy Street. This Sunday the 8th of November the Binalong Rural store will be open between 10 am and 2 pm coinciding with the Binalong Community Markets which will run at the same time.

The Binalong Rural Store will be holding a BBQ for their grand-opening and along with the Binalong Community Markets should create an excellent opportunity for people to meet and celebrate in Binalong. The Community Markets are proudly hosted by Jan Giles (who also happens to be Mrs Spencer’s mother) and Carilyn Muscat at Café on Queen.

The Community Market is a great place to showcase local talent, including clothing, plants, produce and much more. It has been running since November of 2018 at Café on Queen which is currently up for sale.

The Café has a spacious yard to host the event and is offering a spotter’s fee for anyone interested in finding a buyer for the business.

After the Grand Opening, the Spencers’ new shop’s business hours will be Monday to Friday 8:30 am till 5 pm.

“It’s been a bit of a pie in the sky for my husband and I for a few years now. The town used to have a rural store around three years ago, but it closed down,” said Mrs Spencer. “It’s only been since the beginning of this year we thought let’s get stuck in and do it because my husband and I run the local football club and we weren’t involved with football this year due to COVID. We thought we aren’t going to be busy, so let’s get busy.”

Mr Spencer is currently the President of the Binalong Brahmans Rugby League Club, while Mrs Spencer is the secretary.

The Binalong Rural Store is the Spencers’ first business and has hired Helen Hannaford to manage the store for them. Ms Hannaford worked at the previous rural store in Binalong and has a lot of experience for which the Spencers are grateful.

While opening a business, the Spencers are keeping their current jobs, Ali is a high school teacher at Murrumburah High School while Ben works at Transgrid in Yass.

The new Binalong Rural Store will hold a variety of products for the convenience of the town. These products include a large variety of pet food and stock feed, drenches for sheep and vaccines. It will also stock gardening supplies such as potting mix, mulch, hardware, plumbing goods, horse care items and shearing supplies.

“We thought it’s something that’s needed in our town because we have a lot of farmers in our area and a lot of people have horses as well. Being able to provide this service to our community is important to us,” said Mrs Spencer.

The opening of a new shop in Binalong comes at an excellent time for the community. Binalong is becoming an increasingly popular destination for travellers and people looking to make a new life for themselves.

The Spencers, being locals to Binalong along with their two children are happy to be a part of and support the local community.

By Ryan Betts