We are delighted to announce,
Our Western Site Development project has been granted funding by Veolia!
Development of the site will be starting this summer and we hope to be up and running well before the end of the year. For more details on the funding head over to the Southwark News article by Joey Millar.
We will be updating this page with details and progress as soon as the project starts.
Dear Farm Visitors, Volunteers & Users
THE FARM IS APPLYING TO THE VEOLIA ENVIRONMENT TRUST TO:
UPGRADE, DEVELOP & REALISE THE POTENTIAL OF THE FARM’S WESTERN SITE
IN ORDER TO:
- ENHANCE VISITOR EXPERIENCE
- ROVIDE MORE OPPORTUNITIES FOR CHILDREN TO LEARN ABOUT FARMING
- RAISE ANIMAL WELFARE STANDARDS
- IMPROVE HYGIENE & RECYLING
The Veolia Environment Trust wants to see evidence that:
• There is a real need for the project
• The needs and benefits of the project have been established through consulting visitors, users and the community
The needs and proposals which the Farm has so far developed are set out here.
We would be most grateful if you could help us strengthen our application to the Veolia Environment Trust by taking a few minutes to show your support by making your comments and completing the One Page Questionnaire which can be found at the bottom of this page.
THE NEED FOR THE WESTERN SITE DEVELOPMENT
- THE NEED FOR RENOVATION, IMPROVEMENTS & NEW FEATURES FOR THE SITE
- Apart from its eastern facing frontage (with its donkey and cow sheds), the Farm’s western site (see plan) is under-developed, under-visited and unwelcoming.
- The western site accounts for over 1/3rd of the Farm’s total area and its potential to offer a great deal more to the public needs to be unlocked
- The current location of the muckheap blocks any circular access around the site.
- Paths are slippy and muddy.
- The wooden fencing is old, weatherbeaten and rotten in places
- There is no trail, information or interpretation to engage or inform visitors
- THE NEED FOR A NEW PIG HOUSE
Putting up a specially designed pig house on the Farm’s Pig Field and surrounding it with hard standing will provide three major benefits:
- It will enable more flexible animal management when the pigs are out in the field – so that they can be alternated between the grass and the hard standing, instead of always being in a field permanently in a state of churned up mud.
- The sows when farrowing will benefit from larger, dedicated areas for their piglets.
- With the benefit of hard standing, visitors and schools will be able to observe pigs and piglets through an education window and to feed them through an external food tube. They can also learn more about them through the interpretive information provided.
THE PROPOSALS FOR THE WESTERN SITE
To get the site up to a good standard & create a good visitor experience by the following:
- THE MUCKHEAP
- Shifting and setting back the muckheap to enable circular access all around the site
- Supplying the muckheap with a concrete base, drainage & fencing to improve hygiene
- Providing an additional gate onto Rotherhithe Street for ease of collection of farmyard manure by local gardeners
- THE PATHWAYS
- Putting in paving wherever needed for comfortable circular access around the site, creating banking to eliminate muddy areas, fencing off growing areas
- THE FENCING
- Renewing all fencing and gates as a matter of cyclical maintenance, as these are now very weathered and some are beginning to rot
- THE PIG HOUSE
- Erecting a new 4 x 8 metre pig house (with blockwork base and timber clad upper) with central walkway, internal access gates, piglet retreat sections, ventilation & sedum roof on a concrete base (with gates enabling the pigs to move between the grassed area and the concrete base) and with viewing windows – to provide a better environment for sows farrowing, for volunteers working with them and for schools & families visiting
- THE EDUCATION FUN TRAIL
- Creating a clearly marked ‘trail’ of real interest to visitors and children around the western site, starting at the front gate:
- from Small Animal Interpretation to Bee Interpretation to showcasing what the Green Fingers Club have been growing
- from Pig Interpretation around the new Pig House, to more info. on local residents’ growing plots
- from the Outdoor Classroom to a new Outdoor Community Kitchen fuelled by our bio-digester
- from showcasing Plot to Shop planters to providing Interpretation for the Segal building, its grass roof and solar panels and what’s growing in the Polyester tunnel greenhouse behind it
- finally onto the Wildlife Area, with its ongoing development features, including insect habitats, bushcraft & open fire cooking, pond dipping and Cob wall building
- Developing more features for the fun education ‘trail’ the following year and after, including:
- Developing an aviary at the back of the middle field to show the range of the Farm’s poultry and to provide Interpretation about eggs, hatching and growth
- Providing new visually engaging and inter-active features – viz cross sections of nests and burrows seen through glass
Although we will be applying to Veolia for the bulk of the contribution towards our site development, we still need to raise a considerable amount ourselves.
If you could like to donate to this project please do so here.