Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Highly Commended in the Daily Mail's 'Make Your Mark' Awards

Charlotte and Ben were recently finalists in the Daily Mail's 'Make Your Mark' awards for their enterprising initiative in creating the Fordhall Community Land Initiative in 2006.

The winners of the 2009 Make Your Mark Enterprising Young Brits Awards were announced on Tuesday 24 March 2009 at a ceremony at the Institute of Directors (IoD), London. They were each presented with a trophy and £1,000 prize money by Alistair Darling, who made time to chat to finalists and hear their positive stories - see pic!

The Fordhall Community Land Initiative, founded by Ben and Charlotte Hollins together with lots of volunteers, narrowly missed out on winning the top spot in the Social and Community category. But the judges were so impressed with the work the brother and sister team have achieved, they were given a special Highly Commended Award, never before given in the four years the competition has been running!

Run by the Make Your Mark campaign and supported by the Institute of Directors, The Daily Mail, HM Treasury and The Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) the Enterprising Young Brits Awards reward budding young entrepreneurs (aged 30 and under) who have turned their ideas into a profit-making reality, shining a spotlight on the next generation of British business big shots.

Harry Rich, Chief Executive of the Make Your Mark campaign and Chair of the judges, said: “Once again these awards have highlighted some of the fantastically enterprising young people turning their ideas into reality right across the UK. It’s great to see people making money in these tough economic times and we hope that this signals a bright future for British business.”

Monday, March 30, 2009

Keep It Local in Market Drayton

Over the last few weeks, Charlotte has been working with some local businesses on an idea to bring back local shopping habits and a sense of pride for Market Drayton. This week 40 independent businesses in Market Drayton are taking part in 'Keep It Local'. During the week local residents will be encouraged to visit a new independent store, introduce themselves to the shopkeeper and purchase an item. In return the businesses will put a donation in a tin for each new customer they receive. This is not about boycotting the superstores, but about re-addressing the balance in our shopping habits to retain the integrity, variety and beauty of our town centres.

At the end of the week, the donations will be collected and the funds will be put towards the regeneration of the town. This may be through hanging baskets in the main shopping streets or the painting of the empty shop fronts. It will be up to the businesses and residents to decide together.

The purpose of the initiative is two-fold:

1. Introducing customers to retailers begins to build the connections between the community and their local businesses, hopefully, building loyalty and community spirit with it.

2. The donations given by the businesses will clearly demonstrate to the community that the money they spend in these independent retailers stays in the local economy and helps its regeneration. Whereas money spent in the chain retailers disappears out of town. The practical measures such as hanging baskets will show the community what a difference a week of local shopping can do - imagine what a difference a year of this can make!?!

Building on the success of the Fordhall Farm Community Land Initiative, Charlotte hopes that collaborative working in Market Drayton will achieve great results. Demonstrating that small scale changes, when done collaboratively can have a positive, active and long lasting impact in your local area.

Ben is also taking part in the Farmers' Market due to be held in the town centre on Sunday 5th April from 10am-2pm - why not go and say hello - its that easy! :-)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Forest School Fun Week to run again!

After the success of Fordhall's Forest School Fun week at February half term, Fordhall Farm is pleased to announce that it will be running an extra three days during the Easter holidays.
Due to the popularity at half term, places become booked up quickly and we anticipate that the same will happen at Easter.
The days are great fun for all the family and activities will include Farm Trails, mini beast hunts,dens, campfires, woodland crafts and much much more!
So if you are interested in attending one of these really enjoyable days please contact the office on 01630 638696.

Each day costs £5 per child and runs from 10 am - 12.30 pm. Suitable for ages 4 - 12 years. Don't miss out ...Book now!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

FINALISTS! - Enterprising Young Brits Award

WOW! Charlotte and Ben and the Fordhall Community Land Initiative have been shortlised for the Daily Mail's Enterprising Young Brits Awards 2009 through the Make Your Mark campaign.

Make Your Mark is the campaign to give people in the UK the confidence, skills and ambition to be enterprising - to have ideas and make them happen. Having a can-do attitude and the skills to spot opportunities, overcome challenges and implement ideas is more important than ever in today’s tough global economic climate.

Charlotte and Ben have been shortlised in the Social Community category and will travel down to London next tuesday to present to the judges.

Just to be short listed is another fantastic achievement for all those involved with and supporters to, Fordhall Organic Farm in Shropshire! A big thank you and a pat on the back should once again go to all of you. It almost sounds a bit repetitive, but we would not be here without you!


There is a publics choice category that all finalists are entered into and this relys on a public online vote. So, please do vote for us. All you have to do is follow the link below, it is that easy.

Many thanks in advance for all your support and watch this space to reveal the result next week....

Vote for Charlotte and Ben and the Fordhall Community Land Initiative

Friday, March 13, 2009

New lambs at Fordhall

Yes spring has sprung when new baby lambs can be seen around the farm and so far Ben is very happy with the way things are progressing. There have been no real problems and lots of twins have been appearing too.

Ben has about 90 ewes to lamb over the next two weeks, so there are lots of late nights and early mornings as he keeps a close check on all the pregnant mums to be. Many farmers will have lambed most of their sheep by now, but we are always that bit behind as we wait for the grass to start its spring growth. We operate a Foggage farming system at Fordhall Farm, which means that our livestock are outside all year round. As a result their diets are mainly grass and therefore we need to time when the youngstock come on to the farm carefully with the seasons.

You can see the lambs and free range piglets when you visit the farm shop, or for a closer look then come to our Farmers' Market and Lambing Open Day on April 26th 11am-4pm.