A community run farm in inner city West Leeds is appealing for more members in a bid to help it reach the 200-mark by the end of next month.
Volunteers have spent the past 18 months getting Kirkstall Valley Farm ready for operation in 2021 and their plans to build a visitor and storage compound early next year have been confirmed by Veolia Trust awarding £26,000.
A spokesperson for Kirkstall Valley Development Trust (KVDT), which is the organisation behind the project, appealed for members to support the farm in its early days. They said:
“For 18 months we have been getting things ready, now we have to deliver. The Grower will be appointed in February and we’ll need all the volunteers we can get as the restrictions begin to lift.
“We’re clearer than ever that it’s not all about veg. Healthy living is about enjoying yourself with others at the farm, appreciating nature and learning about what we eat. Our first forays into family events were a great success. We want to do more social activities for both members and the community. Taking out a membership subscription will allow us to be more than growers and to turn the Farm into a real community asset
“Creating a new inner city community farm is a big deal. It’s very rare, and we’re lucky to have the opportunity. Please help us succeed.”
In early 2020, KVDT crowdfunded £45,000 from over 300 supporters to get the project going.
The coronavirus pandemic delayed plans, but the farm’s 135 existing members have formed growing, structures, events, wildlife and marketing groups that are ready to go.
The farm is off Kirkstall Road – LS4 2QD – and is accessed from the side of Ready Steady Store. It was privately farmed for many years until the leaseholder died in 2017.