The farm is re-opening! (July 2020)
Ladies and Gentlemen,
This is the first time I’ve been allowed to come here and address you, but serious times call for serious voices, and there is no voice on the farm more serious than mine.
After a decade at the farm, there isn’t much that I haven’t seen, and not many questions I haven’t been asked. When visitors look at me, those questions are mostly ‘How is he so beautiful?‘, ‘How is he so majestic?‘, ‘How is he so strong, yet elegant?’ …and sometimes, those questions are ‘Why does he look so weird?’ and ‘Why is his brain on the outside?‘
Anyway, enough about that!
The question most often asked now is ‘When is the farm going to re-open?’
When the re-opening of Zoos and other Animal Collections was announce for mid June, everyone here at the farm and many of our visitors rejoiced… But it turned out to not be as easy as all that. One of the stipulations was not allowing visitors to directly interact with animals.
This stipulation has now been lifted, and animal contact is permitted, providing visitors wash their hands before and after interacting with animals. Therefore, we are delighted to announce that the farm and cafe is going to reopen from the 28th July onwards.
There will be adjustments to our regular opening hours, as well as the days we will be open to the public for the first five weeks, as we are part of Lambeth & Southwark’s ‘Summer of Food and Fun’ (more on that later). The farm will be operating a strict one way system, as well as limiting total number of people allowed on site at any one time.
Thank you Charlie and the Berkley Group for giving us a hand to get the farm ready for re-opening by adding social distancing signage across the public paths.
Re-opening hasn’t been easy for us, and we are grateful for everyone who has offered their help, advice, and guidance in helping us get here.
Re-opening is a huge relief, but it brings new and ongoing financial challenges. More staff are needed to ensure the safe management of the farm, and running costs such as water, electricity and maintenance of the farmyard and stables are ongoing. Simultaneously, many of our programmes are unable to be run, and those that remain are at reduced capacity, for your safety.
Unlike zoos and safari parks, Vauxhall City Farm does not charge entry, and many of our income generating activities are still restricted under government guidance.
These remain hard times for everyone, and so we ask for your patience when visiting the Farm. There will likely be queuing involved and some areas of the farm will remain closed. This is an ever-changing situation and we are doing all we can to adapt to it.
We wanted to thank ITV News for taking the time to help us spread the message about reopening the farm, and the ongoing challenges we face.
While the relaxation of lockdown has thrown a lifeline to a lot of businesses in the UK, city farms such as ours are free to access and therefore still reliant on your generosity, to help see us through this difficult time, while we wait for permission to resume our income generating services.
Many of you have given generously over the last four months and we cannot thank you enough!
Please keep spreading the word, to help us reach more people with our Appeal to Save Vauxhall City Farm, and let people know that the fight is not over yet.
Something for the kids!
Throughout the summer holidays, Vauxhall City Farm is one of the delivery hubs in the Lambeth & Southwark ‘Summer of Food and Fun‘ programme, managed by Kitchen Social and funded by the Mayor of London.
From the 22nd July to 20th August, we will be delivering a summer programme for children aged 8 – 12, combining sessions on the farm and online activities, every Wednesday and Thursday, 10am – 2pm, with a free meal on both days.
The local population in Lambeth is increasing all the time, with a steady build of new developments and tower blocks in the area. Lambeth is the 5th most densely populated local authority in England and Wales.
Quality green space for local residents is become more important all the time, so we are hugely excited with all the progress that has been made in the Community Garden.
In other exciting news: Scholastic Children’s Books are sponsoring the give away of 3 copies of ‘Llama Glamarama’ by Simon James Green and Garry Parsons.
Larry the llama loves dancing! But have you ever seen a llama dance? Well, neither had Larry – until he spots an ad for the Llama Glamarama. Will this raucous celebration give Larry the pride he needs to bring his dance back home? This is a joyful picture book about celebrating differences.
We will choose 3 lucky winners amongst everyone donating £5 or more to help Save Vauxhall City Farm, between now and the 31st of of July
To enter: Simply forward your donation confirmation to firstname.lastname@example.org, stating you would like to enter the book competition!
Giveaway closes midnight, 31st July.
Any emails received afterwards will not be entered. Winners will be chosen by random draw and contacted by email, as well as announced (first name only) in the August Newsletter.
Remember the Quarantine Chicks we introduced you to, in the last newsletter?
Well, they’ve grown just a little bit since you last saw them…
Head over to our Spotlight Blog to find out how Kylie, Chirpy, and the newly named Trinity are getting on in their new outdoor home with a view!
Want a super easy way to support Vauxhall City Farm, at absolutely no extra cost to you? If you ever order things from Amazon, please visit Amazon Smile instead. When you select Vauxhall City Farm as your chosen charity, Amazon donates to us every time you shop, and it won’t cost you a single extra penny!
Same login, same products, same experience, with added support of Vauxhall City Farm.
That’s all the news from me, for now.
Things are changing daily, and we are doing all we can to keep up with the ever changing information, and keep all of our supporters up to date.
All we can do at the moment is keep on top of ongoing government discussions over the coming weeks, put social distancing measures in place at the farm, and look forward to re-opening at the end of the month!
Trevor the Turkey