A place to get active
In the words of our visitors
- As my son is Autistic, I know that he can be very difficult especially in group situations. I am very used to picking him up from school or groups with the teacher or leader looking very serious and wanting "a chat" about him which usually leads somewhere difficult. It has been lovely to see you come round the corner with him and you both smiling and you bringing positivity with you about him. Thank you for seeing in him the boy I know he is. I just wanted to let you know as it has meant a lot to me and a lot to him.
- Jane (parent)
You can now book courses, retreats and buy tickets for events through our secure online booking service. Click here to start
Conservation, food & farming
Sharpham Outdoors Project offers a variety of different learning, practical hands on experience opportunities in food, farming and conservation, three elements of our activities that we hold dear.
Spring to life, our ecotherapy programme, students learn all sorts of conservation activities in Sharpham’s woodlands, farmland, on the river and around the heritage buildings. The activities can range from working on habitat creation and management, wildlife surveys, species counts to taking simple walks in the woods just to absorb the sights and sounds of Sharpham.
The theme of conservation is echoed in the Leonardo programme, that hosts Hungarian trainees for up to 15 week placements. Our trainees learn reed cutting in the Sharpham lake, hedge laying and woodland and scrub management as part of our conservation activities and practical habitat management. Regular bird surveys and grassland species counts are undertaken as well as small mammal trapping and barn owl radio tracking.
We have strong links with a range of European partners who host UK trainees on fully funded conservation placements. Norway, Poland, Spain and Hungary offer placements to include bird reserve management, bison radio tracking in primeval forest, and wolf and bear research.
Our farm at Lower Sharpham Barton is farmed to improve the natural environment and to increase biodiversity and of course, provides us with great food!
Cattle graze the 80 acres in a strict management programme to ensure the best habitat is created for wildlife for example, farmland birds, small mammals and insects.
A small market garden growing wild flowers and plants helps to provide different species habitats as well as providing us with produce.
All the animals we have bring with them an environmental benefit, over and above their ‘sale’ and ‘therapy’ value. The work horses help us utilise the tractor less and make less impact on the land when harrowing, carefully managing he delicate grassland makeup. The pigs assist us with turning land over to crop planting (potatoes), rotivating the land and adding fertiliser at the same time. The goat mows the grass around our feet (OK so not such a great environmental benefit, but saves on mower fuel).