The Plot 2023 FarmStart Programme is open for applications!


Are you interested in growing food on a commercial scale, or setting up a small-scale horticultural business? Would you like to play an active role in setting up new food growing enterprises around North Lancashire?

Covid and recent political and economic turmoil including the war in Ukraine has highlighted how vulnerable our global food system is. We believe that by connecting more closely with nature, land and food, we can build a resilient local food economy that provides meaningful employment and gives us more control over where our food comes from and how it is produced.

The FarmStart model at The Plot aims to combat some of the challenges involved with entering the food system as a new grower. These challenges include accessing land, finding customers and learning new skills.

We are looking for a group of committed, enthusiastic and local trainee FarmStarters to join our market-garden team at Old Holly Farm (near Garstang) and Polytunnel in Whitelund (Morecambe) for a full growing season of training in 2023.

FarmStart is a year-long programme where you spend two days a week working with an experienced grower across our two diverse sites. Dedicated training and mentoring  covers the horticultural and business skills needed to set up and run a small-scale market garden in the future.

Our previous FarmStart trainees have joined us for a range of reasons but all shared a desire to be a part of the solution. In 2021, Lucy wondered “if she might turn a profit from growing” and Sam joined us feeling his absolute healthiest and happiest after a summer at a vegetable farm and “FarmStart was about getting that feeling back.”

In 2022, Andy joined for a career change stating that “growing to me is holistic and draws many interests together.” Jo got involved due to “a want to discover meaningful work” and Rashid had “always been fascinated by the natural environment” and “wanted to be well equipped with the tools needed to start a community growing enterprise.”

Working on the land and growing food can be hugely rewarding, but is also hard work. If you would like to find out more about whether this is for you, find out more: 

If you would like to apply, please join us for a two hour voluntary taster session at the Plot, on any of these dates:


  • Wednesday 9th November, 10-4pm
  • Wednesday 16th November, 10-4pm

The deadline for applications is midnight, 27 November 2022. 

Interviews will take place on 2 December 2022.

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