Last week, Nus visited Tablehurst Community Farm in Forest Row in order to meet the directors, Chris Marshall and David Junghans and to learn more about the farm.
Tablehurst Farm was founded as a social enterprise more than twenty years ago and it now covers an area of five hundred acres and is open all year round to visitors. The farm business is owned by the local community through a co-operative comprising approximately seven hundred shareholders and the land is owned by a local charity. All surpluses are reinvested in the enterprise, with no distribution of profits.
As well as the organic fruits, vegetables and grains grown on the farm, a variety of livestock are raised at Tablehurst. The produce from the farm, as well as other locally sourced food, is sold in their shop. There is also a café onsite where produce is used to make a wide variety of dishes. Every Friday in summer they make sourdough pizzas in a woodfired oven and on Saturdays they hold a popular BBQ, using organic meat from the farm
Alongside the farm, café and shop, Tablehurst operates a care home for adults with learning disabilities. The farm also trains four apprentices and offers education for children and adults.
Commenting on the visit, Ms Ghani said: “Tablehurst is a local gem. I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to the farm - especially helping Adele make a few of their delicious handmade lamb and mint pies!
The farm shop sells delicious local produce and, now that autumn is upon us, I am sure that the orders will soon begin to roll in for Christmas turkeys.
Tablehurst is undoubtedly a valued community hub, offering a busy schedule of events: ranging from barn dances to family farm walks. It is also an important source of local jobs and work experience.
It is wonderful to see a farm that not only produces food of the highest quality, but also contributes a great deal to the community through education and outreach. Those behind the running of the farm are passionate about sharing their methods of biodynamic farming, soil management and preservation.”