Former Bristol teacher’s dream to collaborate on new farming and food businesses.
Sally Jenkins is living her dream. She left a teaching job in Bristol and bought a smallholding near Pensford in Somerset with her partner, Tom Wilding, where they raise cattle and pigs and grow vegetables to sell locally. But it doesn’t stop there, Sally and Tom want to share the land at Wild Things Farm and encourage others to start new enterprises.
Sally told us about it when she paid a visit to the Oxford Real Farming Conference:
In the past, Sally, and her company Green Feasts, were involved in initiatives in the Montpelier area of Bristol – setting up an urban greening project, converting public spaces into productive, attractive growing areas and engaging local people. She sees Wild Things Farm as an extension of that.
School children already visit Wild Things Farm on organised trips and, in the future, Sally and Tom hope to establish different food production systems and offer agricultural apprenticeships to young people. They are building a barn on the site with space for multiple uses including a poultry hatchery, brooding room and food processing kitchen.
At the moment, sales of vegetables and meat are mainly through local markets and by word of mouth but Sally and Tom are looking to take Wild Things Farm to the next level, increasing both the amount and range of produce. In future, Wild Things Farm will offer free-range poultry and eggs as well as fruit and nuts.
Sally and Tom’s key aims are to provide a source of affordable, nutritious, sustainably produced food, enhance the wildlife on the site, spread awareness of healthy and sustainable lifestyles and become an educational and recreational asset to the local area. Sally is open to new ideas: “We really want to share the land with people who want to experiment. We want business start-ups and youth enterprises, so I've had all these ideas about a youth dairy business that makes their own yoghurts and ice creams, mushroom growing businesses or wormery businesses. We are very open to sharing the land and the facilities with others.”
You can find out more at: www.wildthingsfarm.uk/wp.