I’m carefully trying to avoid gushing so I do apologise if I inadvertently stray into the gushosphere – but I can’t help it, it was a glorious afternoon! Spring sunshine, cream teas on the lawn, children gamboling happily (actually my husband was gamboling happily too) If pushed to critique, maybe a glass of Pinot Grigio would have topped things off nicely but I always was high maintenance.
It wasn’t all cakes and fun though, we did manage to get down to some actual Farm business too. Perhaps most significantly, the constitution was voted in and the committee confirmed as follows: Ange and Gary as joint Chairs, Jeff Lamb as Secretary and Claire Mitchell as Treasurer. As a result, the financial side of the project could spring into action and the first membership fees were taken.
Gabbi reported on the Veg Pilot project. Seeds have been sown and potting on is on the list for the next Farm work day on 16th April. Further materials are needed though, can you donate any of the following: Guttering, a water butt, bean poles (about 500 in total!), blue water pipes, chicken wire and use of a trailer to transport a half tonne tractor to the veg plot in Winfarthing. Gabbi works on the plot every Monday, she plans to draw up a list of jobs which need to be done and post them on this website every Friday so everyone can see what needs to be done the following Monday and (hopefully) turn up to help. Gabbi also emphasised that the nature of a pilot project is experimental, at this stage there are no guarantees on the size of the crop that will be available for the veg shares. The pilot will give us a more accurate idea of how much veg we can hope to get from a given size of land. She also thanked David and Yvonne Mitchell for the loan of the land, providing water and toilets!
Leeanne updated everyone on the Livestock Project. As previously reported on the blog, we have secured 2.5 acres of woodland behind Tesco, this will give the pigs a nice shaded area where they can enjoy a natural lifestyle, rooting among the trees etc. At this stage we can’t afford organic feed but we will be using high quality GM free feed. We’ll also have some geese, not only to scare away intruders but hopefully to raise goslings for Christmas. Everyone who signs up for a meat share will be very welcome to come and work with the pigs, we are hoping to set up an on-line diary system where people can sign up for feeding times etc We haven’t decided on the breed yet but we may choose a commercial pig as they’re fast growing which would work well with a pilot scheme. It’s hoped that we’ll get the pigs at the beginning of June so the meat will be available roughly at the beginning of December. We would also like to organise a sausage making day at some point where members will be able to work with a butcher and use their own pork to make their own recipe sausages.
Gary reported on the Food Hub and I notice he’s already updated the blog with the results of the survey which was handed out. He also confirmed that small growers such as allotment holders will be able to contribute their surplus produce to the Hub, perhaps to exchange for other goods although these details haven’t been confirmed yet. He stressed the need to continue with plans to find DCF a permanent home once the pilot projects are over.
So that’s it, a busy and informative day. For anyone who couldn’t make it yesterday but still wants to sign up for a supportive membership or a veg/meat share, all the necessary forms and details are available here, plus copies of our fundraising booklet ‘A Taste of Spring’ are also still available for purchase. (Apologies for the length of this post by the way)