Deadline Extended – Pledge Money by Friday to Buy a Community Farm near Brixton!

Croydon Lane Farm SM7 - picture from 'Rightmove' site http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-29673802.html

Croydon Lane Farm SM7 - picture from 'Rightmove' site

The deadline has been extended til next week. An update will be posted soon.

Just email anna.francis@bioregional.com pledging amount (min £50).

We have til Friday to pledge money to buy this Farm which is about 5 miles away from Brixton – if you have some money (or a lot!) you can pledge by then, please do. The benefits will be great. Minimum is £50. Also, please circulate as widely as possible. There’s very little time, but we have got almost £500k in two days, so it may be possible. We need $1.15 million. This is being organized by Sutton Community Farm, who, by the way are about to launch a veg box scheme – more on that soon.

The following is the information we have received from Anna.

London’s Community Farm – a crazy idea that might just work?

Community shares are a new and exciting way for communities to buy important assets together, from post offices, to pubs to wind turbines and farms. While they are well established in some rural areas, this is a first for London; an opportunity for us to buy and share a community farm, growing local produce for London and sharing skills.

The land comprises 35 acres including an existing veg farm and nursery, woodland, farm shop, bungalow, glass houses and polytunnels. Together we could buy it and convert it into a community farm to grow (organic) fruit and veg together, ensure we all have access to fresh affordable healthy produce, share skills, offer training to schools, disability groups and everyone else… and much much more.

The land is only £1.15m (which would buy a flat in central London?!) so we only need 780 of us to pledge £1500 each (or more or less). With 7 million people living in London surely we can do it?! In the last few days we’ve already raised £350,000. http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-29673802.html

And there are examples where communities have got together and bought farms elsewhere e.g.: http://www.thecommunityfarm.co.uk/

Time is of the essence: we only found out about the opportunity last week and we need to submit an offer by next Friday (27th). At this stage we only need to know if you are willing to pledge – please email me with your name and the amount you will pledge. And please forward to as many people as you think might be interested… If we get enough people we will issue a community share offer, if not, we won’t go ahead. So what have we got to lose?

More Information

Community shares: there are loads of examples of people getting together and buying farms, post offices, wind turbines etc. The way these shares work is that people invest a certain amount, get benefits such as discounted produce, are part of a worthwhile project, get involved in activity days etc (if desired) and the shares can be sold (for original price) if they need the money back.

Management: the farm would be run by the farm team including experienced growers, project manager, training staff and shop assistants. Quarterly steering group meetings would be held to discuss progress and all shareholders would be invited to the Annual General Meeting, as well as regular activity days and events and the opportunity to bring family and friends to visit their farm.

For further information contact: Anna Francis, anna.francis@bioregional.com 07939 060688  www.suttoncommunityfarm.org.uk

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