New entrant support for farmers: The Farmstart Model

New entrant support for farmers: The Farmstart Model

Hosted by the Landworkers Alliance with the Kindling Trust, Manchester and the Lancaster FarmStart scheme.

New entrants into farming face many barriers, including access to land, high set up costs and a lack of appropriate training. This session will focus on new entrant support for farmers in the north, learning from incubator farms from across the UK.

The session will cover:
– The definition, purpose, benefit and challenges of the FarmStart approach
– An outline of the current policy landscape/campaigns for support for new entrant farmers
– An overview of schemes in the UK and their different approaches
– Two northern case studies of FarmStart training schemes – the very well established Kindling Trust programme in Greater Manchester and the new Lancaster FarmStart scheme to be run at The Plot
– A chance to discuss and explore the barriers and opportunities for creating further FarmStart programmes as a way of building local supply chains/meaningful employment/local food etc


Steph Wetherell is the Farm Start Network Coordinator for the Landworkers’ Alliance, working to build a network of farms and organisations offering farm-start opportunities. She is also the Media and Comms Coordinator for the LWA and runs the mentoring programme. She also writes about food and farming for a number of different websites and magazines, working to connect people with where their food comes from.

Helen Woodcock is a founding member of Greater Manchester’s Kindling Trust – working to create a fairer, more sustainable food system for Manchester and beyond. Over the last 13 years Helen has helped establish Kindling’s practical initiatives including our FarmStart programme, to encourage and support a new generation of organic growers; Woodbank Community Food Hub; and Kindling’s sister co-operatives Manchester Veg People and Veg Box People, to create fairer markets for organic growers and make local organic food accessible to all. Helen is currently focused on establishing the Kindling Farm, a 100+ acre organic agroforestry farm for the Northwest.

Ellen Pearce has been coordinating FarmStart work in Lancaster for the last 3 years, undertaking a feasibility study, pilot programme and setting up a local funding scheme for the project. She co-chairs the Food and Economy working group for FoodFutures, North Lancashire’s Sustainable Food Network and coordinates the Northern Real Farming Conference.


Oct 01 2020


1:30 pm - 3:00 pm