Category — England
Feature documentary looking at the latest science about the health benefits of children re-connecting with nature
“I think that city farms could play a massive part in future health!”
By Toni Harman,
Producer / Director, A Probiotic Life
As well as the general point about the need for our children to reconnect with nature, the film explores the latest science that suggests young children could really benefit from being more exposed to more farm microbes.
We recently returned from filming on an Amish farm in Indiana where the children have remarkably low rates of asthma and allergies – the scientists hypothesise that a diet of locally sourced organic food plus the children being exposed to the microbes from farm animals from a very young age – these could be conferring considerable health benefits for the Amish children.
July 1, 2015 No Comments
I helped out for several years on an allotment owned by a neighbour who didn’t have time to use her full plot.
By Tess Riley
May 25, 2015
In 2013, Growhampton was one of 25 student union projects to be helped financially by the National Union of Students (NUS), as part of their students’ green fund. Growhampton combines training, volunteering and education in food growing for students at the University of Roehampton. It manages the Hive, an ethical cafe constructed from two former shipping containers and upcycled furniture.
June 6, 2015 Comments Off on UK university students learn to grow food
The Oxford City Farm group is one of 19 charities, groups and organisations from Oxfordshire trying to get the money from Aviva.
By Alex Wynick,
May 225, 2015
The farm steering group, which is planning the farm for a site off Cornwallis Road, Cowley, has more than 4,000 votes so far.
Chairwoman Lucie Mayer said: “We want to transform the currently derelict farm site into a beautiful, innovative, inclusive, thriving and free to enter community space.
“This project is about bringing farming and a wide range of associated social and educational opportunities to the heart of East Oxford.
June 4, 2015 Comments Off on Group working to set up Oxford’s first city farm – UK
His Edible Map of Newcastle is “a guide to help visualise a city where fruit, vegetables, livestock, fish, bees and other food sources could flourish and be nurtured in streets, empty rooftops and under-used open spaces”.
By David Whetstone
28 May 2015
Another important contributor to the project was Mikey Tomkins, an academic researcher, artist and consultant in urban sustainability and urban agriculture.
For his doctorate, Mikey looked at community food gardens on London housing estates. Currently he is working as a consultant in the United States and Uganda, developing urban agriculture projects with poor communities, especially among refugees.
May 29, 2015 Comments Off on Newcastle, UK envisages a future where food is produced on urban rooftops and green spaces
The VydroFarm system at The University of Nottingham’s Creative Energy Homes Project (left to right) Stephen Fry, commercial sales manager, HydroGarden; PhD student Matthew Woodward; Professor Mark Gillott, The University of Nottingham.
Two of HydroGarden’s vertical hydroponic systems have been installed in the University’s ‘Creative Energy Homes Project’.
By Sarah Jelly at HydroGarden
The University of Nottingham is embarking on an exciting new hydroponics research project with the help of Coventry-based hydroponics experts, HydroGarden, as part of its investigations into new concepts for energy efficient food secure future living.
The project will be supervised by Professor Mark Gillott and undertaken by Matthew Woodward, an undergraduate student on the B.Eng Hons Architecture Environment Engineering Programme at The University of Nottingham’s Department of Architecture and Built Environment.
It will investigate the differences in the energy used by a hydroponic system with only LED lighting, and one that utilises a mixture of natural and artificial lighting sources. The work will consider the impact of these different growing environments on the growth and production of the plants.
May 13, 2015 Comments Off on HydroGarden assists The University of Nottingham in new food and energy research
The farms purpose is to reconnect city residents with food, improve knowledge and understanding of where the food comes from.
Excerpt from their website:
Rooted in Hull is an urban agriculture concept based on a farm in a box. We are in the process of turning that concept into reality.
Our plan is to create a unique micro farming enterprise in the heart of the City of Hull, a city with no permanent land available.
We are designing the project to be structurally mobile and self sufficient. Mobility is an essential part of the project allowing it to make the most of vacant development sites in the area as an “in the meantime” site use.
May 12, 2015 Comments Off on Innovative Community Urban Agriculture project in the heart of Hull, UK
The singer is leading an appeal for the charity Thrive, which uses the therapy of horticulture
By Jane Merrick
19 April 2015
The Eighties pop star Kim Wilde has revealed how gardening helped her through bouts of anxiety and to restore “balance” after a turbulent time in the music business.
In a BBC appeal for the charity Thrive, which helps people with physical disabilities and mental health issues through gardening therapy, Wilde says: “Horticulture really brought me back to life. Gardens are always the first place I go to regenerate … they are a complete sensory experience.”
April 28, 2015 Comments Off on Kim Wilde: ‘Horticulture gave me back my life.
Step-by-step instructions to turn anyone into a used coffee ground mushroom farmer
We decided to bring this ultra eco-friendly idea to the rest of the world with our GroCycle Online course. People from 15 countries have already joined us. It’s the first DIY program that gives step-by-step instructions to turn anyone into a used coffee ground mushroom farmer! We recently rolled out our Kickstarter campaign and received an amazing response from all over the world.
March 30, 2015 Comments Off on GroCycle Online Course Will Bring Network of Mushroom Growers
Other pollinators don’t like urban areas as much as rural, but bees live in similar numbers across different landscapes
By Marissa Fessenden
February 12, 2015
Katherine Baldock, of the University of Bristol, surveyed pollinator abundance across 36 different sites that spanned farmland, nature reserves and urban areas. Her team counted honey bees, bumble bees and other flying pollinators. The group found that each area had about the same amount of total pollinators. Even though urban areas might not seem like the ideal place for flower-loving bees, those landscapes held more diverse bee species, though the other pollinators were less diverse and numerous. Baldock and her colleagues published their findings in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B.
February 24, 2015 Comments Off on City Bees Are Actually More Diverse Than Country Bees
Today the film goes live on ‘1000 Londoners’ – Bessie, Londoner #65
Directed by Ross Dickson
(Must see. Mike)
“In my day job I’m a psychiatrist. There’s an overlap – sometimes when I’m at work and I’m with people that I’m supposed to be treating with medication and so forth, I say to them ‘have you got a local city farm?’ ” Bessie, Trustee at Stepney City Farm
Bessie moved to London from Adelaide about 20 years ago, and began working in social work with rough sleepers. She is now a psychiatrist and is also a Trustee on the board at Stepney City farm.
February 12, 2015 Comments Off on Bessie, The Psychiatrist Who Finds Peace Of Mind At Stepney City Farm
We’re about to see a lot more growing of produce in our cities as urban farming steps in to help boost global food production
By Ryan McChrystal
Elite Business Magazine
07 January 2015.
GrowUp started off by building a prototype demonstration farm – the GrowUp Box – 18 months ago following a successful Kickstarter campaign. It consists of a greenhouse above a shipping container where the fish live. “We set up first of all because we wanted to have something up and running to show people that food can be grown in cities using aquaponics.”
Originally built at London Bridge, the box moved to Stratford as part of a bigger project called Roof East – formerly an empty rooftop carpark, now a haven for food lovers. “Since December last year, we have been working on the business model for scaling aquaponic urban farming to a commercial model in cities like London, looking at the different operation models and at some variations in production systems,” says Hofman.
January 25, 2015 Comments Off on Urban agriculture is bringing food production back into our cities
How would you feel if a piece of disused land or a neglected urban space, such as a grass verge or roundabout, was suddenly made into a productive veg patch or pretty flower field?
Dec 24, 2014
Professor Larkham, associate head of Birmingham City University’s School of the Built Environment, says: “Guerrilla gardening is an international phenomenon. Those involved take part for a number of reasons, from brightening up their neighbourhoods to using gardening as a form of political protest.
“The land they are targeting is quite varied. It seem to range from traffic roundabouts and roadside grass verges to bits of land that one planner once called SLOP – Space Left Over after Planning – to derelict sites, unused patches of land which are clearly in somebody’s ownership but aren’t in any sort of productive use.
January 7, 2015 Comments Off on Guerrilla Gardening Research
The project grows vegetables using a system based on aquaponic techniques
By Katie Pavid
The Bristol Post
November 06, 2014
One of the groups who have been nominated is Grow Bristol, an urban farming venture.
The team are developing and demonstrating innovative and sustainable ways of growing food in the city spaces of Bristol for the benefit of everyone who lives here.
November 18, 2014 Comments Off on ‘Smart urban farmers’ at Grow Bristol, UK
Another key to making urban agriculture economically viable, according to André, is its being seen as an integral part of closed loop systems using urban waste for compost and nutrition.
By Rob Hopkins
Oct 21, 2014
In order to weave urban agriculture, and its potential, into our discussions this month on ‘Reimagining Real Estate’, who better to talk to than André Viljoen and Katrin Bohn, architects, academics and authors of the recently published Second Nature Urban Agriculture; designing productive cities? Their first book, Continuous Productive Urban Landscapes (CPULs), published in 2004, put the idea of urban agriculture onto the agenda of the architectural profession. Things have changed a lot since then. I caught up with them by Skype a few weeks ago. As André told me, the reception when 10 years ago they first suggested to publishers a book on urban agriculture was “agriculture? We do architecture!”
November 4, 2014 Comments Off on Carrots among the concrete: the role of urban agriculture
The government has made an agreement with landowners including Network Rail and the Highways Agency to restore bee-friendly habitat throughout England.
By Victoria Gill
Science reporter, BBC News
Nov 3, 2014
To make space across an increasingly urban landscape for insects, the government has secured commitments from landowners including Network Rail and the Highways Agency, which has agreed to undertake work to “enhance the grassland” on its verges.
Mr Shardlow pointed out that these pollinator-friendly urban spaces were vital and he encouraged the public to help.
November 4, 2014 Comments Off on 10-year National Pollinator Strategy in England: New measures to protect pollinators