Farm and Gardens
Our small farm covers about 25 acres of grassland. The fruit and vegetable gardens make up a further 3 acres. We also rent about 23 acres of farmland, enabling us to provide our own haylage and allowing some rest for the pasture fields. View an aerial view of our farm.
Students and co-workers work together on our land-based activities. The farm and gardens are working, productive environments as well as being teaching resources.
On the farm we usually have between 6 and 10 shorthorn cattle, 8 to 12 sheep (with lambs in the spring), 4 pigs, 70 Rhode Island Red (fox permitting!) and bees. There are also 8 or 9 horses/ponies belonging to the Wakefield RDA.
The farm and gardens are worked entirely on organic principles and we make use of Bio-dynamic preparations, but our produce does not bear the Soil Association or Demeter standard.
The gardens produce most of our ‘in season’ fruit and vegetables. At present we are almost 50% self-sufficient in terms of garden produce for about 75 people on site. It is possible that we could increase vegetable production in future to be able to offer ‘farm gate’ sales as the demand for organic produce is growing.
In the autumn we press apples and bottle the juice.
Over the summer we rely on lots of additional help; people come to help through organisations such as WWOOF or as a working holiday break, students also come from other countries to practise speaking English.
We now rent an additional 23 acres of farmland. This will allow rest for some of our pasture fields and enable us to provide our own haylage.
The fields link to a footpath leading to Seckar Woods, an area that has its own special ecology and is protected as an SSI and Woolley Moor. It also joins the bridle way network through Newmillerdam Country Park. Pennine and Wakefield RDA were instrumental in gaining permitted bridle way status to the country park.