Big ride to highlight good works

Heeley City Farm big ride - some of the team in training
Heeley City Farm big ride - some of the team in training
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A team of riders from Heeley City Farm are getting in the saddle to raise much-needed funds for the community farm.

“We are expecting blood, sweat, tears, and discomfort,” said Sam Bennet, who will lead the team on the Great Heeley City Farm Cycle Ride this weekend, cycling 220 miles in two days.

The team of six - made up of staff and local residents - will head to London on May 26, stopping in at other community farms along the way.

“First we drop into Stonebridge City Farm in Nottingham, and then Gorsehill City Farm in Leicester,” said Sam.

“They are very like us and were the first city farms to be established in the country in the late 70s, with Heeley City Farm opening shortly after. We were pioneers at the time and part of reason for this ride is to highlight the fantastic work to help inner city communities that continues to be done by city farms like ours all over the country.

“To many people we are a nice free place to take the children to see the animals and see how food is grown, go to the playground and visit the cafe, but we are so much more than that. We look after people with learning difficulties and youngsters excluded from school. We try to tackle food poverty by teaching food growing and helping set up community and school gardens on sites all over the city - and we also work closely with the local food bank.

“We are one of the few organisations in Sheffield still trying to tackle fuel poverty and we run health courses for the those in need. Local youngsters help us look after the animals and many get a first start into careers in animal care and horticulture. What we do is wide-reaching and diverse, but at the heart of it, is looking to help local communities fight poverty and tackle inequality in an ethical way.”