Farm History

This shows our farm land in 1880.  The red dot marks the approximate position of our current building Today the farm is known as Bath City Farm and covers an area of 37 acres. On this 1880 map the red dot marks the approximate location of the current farm building. As you can see there was no housing in the area in the late 19th century. The farm itself pre-dates the Doomsday book, which was set up by William the conquerer in the 11th Century. The Doomsday Book shows how all the land in the UK was used and who owned it. It is likely that the land has always been farmed, right from the very first farmers, 10,000 years ago. The limestone hillside over clay supports a number of natural springs. As you can see from the map, each field has a traditional name such as “Lower Lamb Sleight”, names that were lost due to lack of use. We have reinstated these names to rekindle a sense of history with the land.

Field Names
Lower Lamb Sleight – Sleight comes from an old english word “slaeget” or sheep pasture.
Sideland Innox- Innox comes from an old Saxon word meaning “to inhoke” or leave fallow for a year.
Springfield – so named from the spring that breaks out there.
Maiden Furlong – Perhaps a field tended by nuns!
Broads Sideland
Greater Lambs Sleight

Our fields are “unimproved grassland” with a history of traditional grazing, and are rich in wildflowers including Knapweed, cowslip, ox-eye daisy and scabious. In turn this encourages a wide range of insects and butterflies to our pastures.  Fields like this are becoming increasingly hard to find due to intense agricultural practices.

How Bath City Farm Began
Bath City Farm was set up by the local community in the early 1990s, when the resident farmer retired. It gained charitable status in 1995. Over the past 17 years there has been considerable progress on site, including introducing our Soay sheep, goats, chickens, ducks and pigs, a pony and most recently a flock of guinea fowl. The BBC’s ‘DIY SOS’ team completed the farm’s first building in July 2005, providing our volunteers, visiting groups and staff with wet weather facilities and an office. From January 2013 have had a wooden volunteer cabin and training room, which are also available for hire.  if you want to know about hiring them, contact Sarah Neale (sarah@bathcityfarm.org.uk)