Surrey Docks Farm is appealing for help from visitors and supporters in their campaign to revitalise the western edge of the site.
The farm has applied for a grant from Veolia Environmental Trust and have asked people to fill in a questionnaire at their website explaining why the farm deserves the grant.
At the moment, the western area – which makes up around a third the total area of the whole farm – is “under-developed, under-visited and unwelcoming” – a real pigsty!
Hugh Watson, the farm’s marketing manager, explained: “There is all this space that is not being fully realised. People can’t go all the way around the path so they’re missing out on this whole area, and the place just looks a bit rundown.
“For people walking up the road, this is the first part of the farm they see. It might be putting people off visiting so it’s something we really need to improve.
“Just as importantly, it will also improve animal welfare.”
The grant will fund a number of improvements to the area, including a new path which will allow visitors to greater access to more animals, educational activity areas and a new pig house.
Livestock Manager Claire Elson said: “The specially designed pig house would allow mums to give birth there, rather than be taken somewhere else where visitors couldn’t see them. With the new pig house, with its glass windows, visitors could see the piglets grow and interact with their mums.”
However, Veolia must be satisfied that there is a clear need for the grant in the farm and support from visitors and local residents.
Claire urged people who care about the farm and the services it provides to help out and register their interest.
She said: “We want to make the farm better for both visitors and animals. The application is really important. We want to show that we’ve been here for 40 years and we’re here to stay.”
Sow what do you say? Go the whole hog by supporting the grant and fill in a short questionnaire at the farm’s website