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Whirlow Hall Farm Trust is an educational  trust that was established by Alan Aikin in 1979.  Alan grew up in the inner city and was evacuated to a farm during the Second World War. He was profoundly affected by his experience and so, years later, decided to set up a centre where inner-city children and those from challenging backgrounds could learn and develop  in the countryside. 


Boy with Chicken Web Each year we help over 10,000 children and young people, many from disadvantaged backgrounds and the inner city, to grow.  We inspire, nurture and expand horizons for them so that they can make the most of their potential.  Our offering is wide ranging.  We run programmes for children who are excluded, or at risk of exclusion, from mainstream education – we help them get back on track.  We have programmes for youngsters who have additional educational needs – to help them develop life skills, grow in confidence and reduce the risk of isolation.   We host  schools on day and residential visits so that they can learn in a different environment, grow in confidence and develop bonds with classmates and teaching staff.  Finally, we enable college students to fulfill the practical elements of agriculture and environmental qualifications.  We constantly review the programmes we offer to meet the needs of those that we help.

Most of our young visitors will not have had the chance to spend much time at a farm or in the countryside. So holding a freshly-hatched chick, bottle feeding a new-born lamb or seeing a pig with her piglets can be an unforgettable experience.  For many, it will change their lives forever.

Most of those who visit come from the Sheffield City Region, but our reach extends across South Yorkshire and beyond; we’ve even hosted groups from west of the Pennines and south of the M4!

To learn more about our programmes please visit our Education section.


Delivering high quality programmes in a safe and secure environment is an expensive business and so we work hard to raise the funds needed.  We open the Farm to the public at weekends and during the school holidays.  We make the most of what the Farm produces in our shop, butchery, cafe and at off-site events.  When they’re not being used for educational purposes, we hire out our facilities for a wide range of activities.  We run dozens of events each year and have almost 200 volunteers who help in every aspect of the Trust’s activities.   All to raise the money needed for our charitable work.

But despite all of this, we rely heavily on fundraising and donations to enable us to continue to inspire children and young people. If you would like to support Whirlow Hall Farm, please visit our Fundraising section for ways in which you can get involved.

Many local businesses, organisations, families and individuals are members of our 480 Club.  It’s a great way to support us and has become a mainstay of our fundraising effort.  If you’d like to know more then please have a look at our 480 scheme.


Last edited on mlJul 27th, 2017

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