Acquisition of this site will be made possible by a philanthropic loan from Julia Davies of We Have The POWER, through her Funding Nature Project. You can find out about other sites acquired through the Funding Nature project here.
Things continue to move towards exchange and completion of the land purchase.
There have been a few delays with the exchange due to a number of issues on the land which the sellers are needing to sort out before we would feel able to move to exchange of contracts. However, the sellers are very motivated and we are working together to do all thats needed to resolve the issues. This does mean that completion of the land purchase will likely be delayed a bit but we should be ready to exchange very soon. It is great to be getting all the necessary issues ironed out and ready to take on our stewardship of this beautiful patch of Devon.
In the background of the purchase process we are busily applying for various funding, prepping the share offer, creating implimentation plans for the different parts of the land.Each of the organisations are also creating designs for the parts of the project that they are mostly responsible for whilst also working together to take advantage of opportunities to collaborate and ensure a fully integrated vision for the whole land.
We have been working hard for the last few months since our offer was accepted, getting all the legal bits in place and raising the funds ready for purchase which we now understand will happen at the end of March. Julia Davies of We Have the Power has joined us with an amazing offer to back a chunk of the money needed. Julia is really supportive of this project and she has many other projects that need her input. We had been hoping to be able to purchase without using her kind offer at all or at least to be able to reduce what we need to borrow from her so that she has more funds to support all the other incredible projects she has approaching her. The funds she offers will get us through to ownership but doesn't cover what's needed to deliver this project for the long term. So we are going back out to our wonderful community that we have had such an incredible response from so far...
PLEASE CAN YOU HELP?
Without more investment we could well loose the chance to save this piece of land from further destruction and potentially leave it open to development by mainstream developers.
Also if you'd like to find out more about the project then please do come join us for our farm walk this Sunday 5th February. Meeting at Bowden Community in the community centre at 11am.
Bowden Community is on the Ashprington Road about a mile south of Totnes
Postcode: TQ9 7PW
Enter in the second entrance for the car park (top entrance if walking or in bike)
Park in the car park
Walk to back up the carpark (towards the top entrance)
Turn right up the back lane
Keep straight until you enter the veggie garden
The community Centre is the Red building on the left,
If you get lost ask anyone you see where the Community Centre is.
Our offer on lots 1,2,4,5 of Bowden Pillars farm have been accepted!!!
Unfortunately we were out bid on lot 3. However, there is still space enough for market garden, orchard, regenerative agriculture, the one planet community, and Devon Wildlife Trusts nature recovery and tree planting plans. So thrilled to get this opportunity to create something truly regenerative and nurturing to our precious earth and the wonderful Totnes and wider Devon community.
Thanks so much for all your support we couldn't do it without you !!!
Bowden Pillars Farm will serve for the local community and transform it to a beacon for regenerative agriculture, create an oasis for nature, plant a community forest, and to open up access to the farm, which is on Totnes’s doorstep.
A group of local organisations have been working together for a while on the aim of transforning the farm. We are:
Reclaim the Grain – Dartington-based millers of local grains.
Tony Greenham - a leader in purposeful finance - CEO of South West Mutual
Bowden Pillars Farm is a special place, because of its location and the character and quality of the land - most of its hedges and woods remain intact, and its fields are small. The farmland reaches all the way down to the southern edge of Totnes, and the farmyard is just over a mile from the station, as the crow flies. The two main areas of land are either side of Bowden House Community towards Ashprington and Totnes. The farm is just under 200 acres.
The farm will be transformed with regenerative agriculture including agroforestry, grains for the local mill, a grass-fed cattle herd, chickens, a market garden and new orchards, all under the expert eye of the Apricot Centre. They have already demonstrated that this mix of regenerative farming is profitable, creates local employment, sequesters carbon, increases biodiversity and produces healthy local food.
Alongside this we will foster nature recovery at whole-farm scale including bringing the farm’s woodland back into management, new woodland planting, and returning some of the land to nature.
Most of the land closest to Totnes – the northern part of the farm – is steeply-sloping and of limited agricultural use. It is ideal for planting trees - a community forest for Totnes including improvements to the local rights of way network and spaces for use by local groups.
It is intended that the whole farm will be put into a land trust, to be secured forever for regenerative use and the local community. We also plan to expand the Apricot Centre’s successful education and training activities at Bowden Pillars.
Can you help with expertise and / or investment to help realise this vision?
The farm is being sold in five lots:
Lot 1 - the farmyard and buildings, including the farmhouse and a bungalow. Already has two dwellings, and permitted development ‘Class Q’ rights to convert the barns into another five.
Lot 2 and 3 for the majority of the farmland:
Lot 2 is both the steeper land sloping down to Totnes beside the A381 and the land on the top of the hill to the west of Totnes Down Hill
Lot 3 is land on the east side of the Ashprington Road as far as the Natural Burial Ground.
Lot 4 - the land closest to Totnes below Bowden Reservoir, and
Lot 5 - the quarry on Maudlin Road. .