Awarded £14,390.74 (40% of the total project costs of £45,199.75) of LEADER funding from Making it Local towards the refurbishment of a barn to create an organic dispatch facility on the farm and the purchase of the associated equipment to run the business.
Bulstone farm was purchased in 2010 and is owned and managed by Jon Theodosiou and Laura Williams. The farm is 9.8 hectares of grassland with an additional 4 hectares of woodland, and came with a stocked carp lake.
During the first two years on the farm Jon and Laura set up an organic egg business, this has now been in operation for 5 years and is growing in demand. They currently have 180 laying hens.
At the end of 2012 there was a landslide on site which destroyed a track and the carp lake, this meant the fishing business ceased until the work could be undertaken. The track was replaced this year and the carp business will be restored over the next 18 months.
Jon and Laura wanted to invest in the refurbishment of a barn to turn it in to a despatch facility and support to purchase the equipment for the facility. They didn’t have the chickens; these were purchased as a non-grant item together with some other housing facilities as these costs are not eligible for LEADER funding.
The project came about as the applicants were inspired by other organic chicken producers. Having reared laying hens they have experience of chicken management.
The proposed project is to increase turnover and productivity to create a sustainable farm business. The increase will provide a part time job for Laura and a part time job for another staff member.