Your farm catchup newsletter
View this email in your browser

Farm Newsletter - August 2016

Welcome to your August update from the Farm. Apologies that we're now well into September - it's been a very busy summer!

The Western Site Development has progressed well and the contractors are aiming to finish end of September. The muck heap is complete and our livestock team are using the new much improved space. The pigs will be treated to 5* luxury accommodation in their new pig houses - with sleeping quarters for the piglets, high ceilings, wood cladding and a sedum roof to come. Visitors will be able to peep inside the pens through windows built at adult and child height!
The final work will include laying a new concrete path by the youth allotments and replacing the fencing in the field - if all goes to plan I'll be sharing the finished images with you in the next newsletter!

The work on our community allotment space is nearing completion and we've given out the beds to previous allotment holders and those on the waiting list. They look brilliant and it's great to have local people growing on the space again. We will be widening the path and installing a new shed and picnic bench during September.

We've hosted a couple of visits from the GoodGym who have helped out with volunteering tasks on lovely summer evenings. If you're interested in regular volunteering at the Farm, we have a range of roles and ways to get involved from mucking out the livestock to supporting our youth programmes. Have a look on our website for current volunteer vacancies.


We've welcomed a new Livestock Apprentice to our team, Brandon Brockett has joined us to follow in Tom's footsteps. He'll be with us for 18 months and will gain his Level 3 Animal Care diploma.

Thanks to the support of the Worshipful Company of Farmers we were able to purchase a new bespoke house for our geese. With the help of Northern Trust corporate volunteers this has been built and the geese are very happy in their new home.

The Livestock Team have been busy taking the mobile farm out to events this summer. They camped over at the Edenbridge & Oxted Agricultural Show to promote city farms.

We have been selling cured meat from our Mangalitsa pigs - there are still a few packs left of delicious culatello and lardo. Ask in our farm shop!

Youth Clubs

The Farm is a very popular place for young people. We run projects for families and very young children, right up to 13 years. From 14 our youth club members graduate to become volunteers.

Piglets Club engages pre-school children from local nurseries and children centres. We've taken a break over the summer, but now the groups are back and have been learning about apples in our orchard. They've collected the windfall apples, learnt to use knives to cut the fruit and then had fun painting and printing with them!

Get Farming Club have spent a lot of time on the allotment harvesting cucumber, salad, onions, tomatoes and purple french beans to sell in the shop and take home. The young people are excited to see their squash plants growing so well - they are now climbing over the wall onto Rotherhithe Street! The Club's favourite animal task this month has been taking the ferrets for a walk. 
Young Farmers have been enjoying making friendship bracelets from sheep wool, making apple juice with the windfall apples and spending time with the donkeys. They like mucking out the duck house the most, as they enjoy all the different tasks such as topping up the food and water and removing the cob webs from the ceiling. 

During the summer holiday we've delivered a range of extra activities including family cooking workshops, ceramics sessions and for the older age range we've offered two full day clubs: Bushcraft and Farm Club.
The bushcraft activities have been lots of fun - lighting fires, cooking and making bread using pendulous sedge, roasting marshmallows and making smores as well as roasting apples and baking bananas. The holiday club members have also used the bow drill set to try friction fire and enjoyed games in the park including fox walk and stealth!

Green Grow Cook and Go!

Drop in gardening 10am-1pm Saturday:

Drop in gardeners have been working wonders in the Farm despite the heat this past few weeks. They have harvested courgettes, kale, chard, blueberries, French beans and spring onions to stock the Farm shop on Saturday mornings, as well as planting flowers around the Farm, watering the allotments and potting on winter kale and foxgloves. Everybody is welcome to Saturday morning gardening sessions - no previous experience necessary!


Drummond Road Community Garden:

The community gardeners have sowed spinach, radish, lettuce and turnip seeds ready to stock the garden for Autumn. The abundantly fruiting pumpkins have been trained to grow up and along the front fencing, the tomatoes are ripening on the vine and the kale is providing the community with a regular harvest. The courgettes have been tended to each week and are looking in fine health, almost ready for the first harvest.

These sessions are free to attend and open to all 3-6pm Thursdays at Drummond Road Community Offices


Natural Dye workshop: learn to dye materials with plants harvested from the Farm’s dye garden with Penny Walsh. You will take home everything you dye. Saturday 22nd October and Saturday 5th November 2-4pm. £15 per person. Register at

For more information about this project, follow @greengrowcookgo on Twitter

Training Projects

We deliver training projects for adult students with learning disabilities. Students develop skills in a range of areas including horticulture, retail, cooking, crafts, animal care and basic maintenance.

Plot to Shop
The group have been busy watering, harvesting, weeding and clearing this month! They have enjoyed having tea break outside under the trees.
A big part of the students training is to learn what to harvest and to package and price the veg. It looks very tempting in the raised beds, but please don't help yourself! Harry made a new sign to hopefully deter visitors from foraging by explaining the beds are part of a training project. Instead, come to the Farm Shop on Thursday, Friday and Saturdays to purchase some of their beautiful colourful veg!


Farm Produce
Last month the group were busy getting ready for their stall at the Harvest Festival the room was busy with jam setting, wax cooling, jar labelling, and posters being made!
The group have worked on a range of apple jellies, with ginger, lavender or spicy chillies; plus many other jams using summer harvests from the farm. They've also prepared some crafts to decorate their stall and sell.


Moo Crew
Well, the crew have had a busy month. Kieron has been working and getting to know the piglets, Lou has been doing great work with the donkeys and Jordan has been cleaning the Goat House to a polished shine!
The students have also been branching out into a few new areas. Kieron and Lou are very keen on the ferrets, while Jordan has been a great supporter of our afternoon donkey walks. (this may be because he likes to have a nap on the grass while the donkeys have a munch!)
There has been much discussion of the new seasons football fixtures, see the photo below, as well as Olympic mayhem. Boxing seems to be the sport of choice!


New Leaf
August has been busy for the New Leaf team! Jordan added sticks to his bed so his peas can grow taller, he harvested potatoes to take home and replaced with leeks.
Earl has been cleaning up his geraniums and picking lots of tomatoes and beans. He has grown huge squashes and lots of very hot chillies! He's also sowed carrots.
Tony's favourite job is sieving and mixing the compost ready to use. He has also picked his yellow courgettes.



Piccalilli Caff

Rotherhithe’s award winning café! 
Open Tuesday-Sunday 10am-4pm for all day breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea.


Yoga on the Farm

Community Yoga at the Farm. Find your inner yogi and feel great!  

Thursdays 6.30- 7.30pm: Release, restore, reenergise:
 a slower vinyasa flow style class with a focus on relaxation and longer holds in poses to increase flexibility. Perfect for beginners or those who take part in lots of physical activities such as cycling and running and need to strech out overworked muscles 

Thursdays 7.45-8.45pm: Power yoga. A fast flowing classes which will make you sweat. A focus on standing postures, arm balances and inversions.  Unwind by building strength and burning energy 

£6 a class, or book 4 for £20. 
Booking essential email: 
The Forge
Kevin Boys our resident blacksmith holds classes every Sunday from 10am -12pm
Tel: 07984416269

Copyright © 2016 Surrey Docks Farm, All rights reserved.

unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp