New farm site is ‘too dangerous’

NILABE120421e2, Fun day at quackers community farm, Cotmanhay. MP Jessica Lee with the parrot from pirates of the carribean, Jackie Whipp and Melanie Woolins.
NILABE120421e2, Fun day at quackers community farm, Cotmanhay. MP Jessica Lee with the parrot from pirates of the carribean, Jackie Whipp and Melanie Woolins.

A Cotmanhay community farm faces more difficulties as it plans to move to a new site as two councillors have spoke out against the move.

The popular Quackers Community Farm has been asked to move from its current location in the car park of the Bridge Inn pub by October 21.

Earlier this month, Erewash Borough Council agreed to a lease on a patch of wasteland at the top of Skeavington’s Lane but it is yet to receive planning permission.

Cllrs Glennice Birkin and Jane Wilson said this week that although they support the work of the volunteer-run farm, the site at the foot of a farm track, could result in a road accident.

“We are not againist the farm,” said Cllr Wilson, who represents Ilkeston North on Erewash Borough Council, where the new site lies.

“I don’t think it’s in the right place.

“The biggest problem is the road safety.

“It’s on a bend and there’s just a track leading up towards the farm and heavy lorries and tractors are always going up there.”

Cllr Glennice Birkin, a fellow Labour councillor, who represents the area on Derbyshire County Council, said: “I think it will be dangerous for the children.”

The farm move has come under fire in recent weeks from its potential new neighbours, who fear rats, noise and smells, as well as traffic concerns.

Last week owners Melanie Woolins and Jackie Whipp told the Advertiser they had their fingers crossed for planning permission.

Although they said they were ‘confident’, they admitted that if the plan is turned down it could result in the farm closing down.

Cllr Wilson added: “It’s a wonderful organisation.

“I was brought up on a farm and I think farms for children are great.

“I just fell that it’s not safe there. It’s got to be a site that’s compatible for everybody.”

She said if the plan is turned down it should be up to both the council and Quackers to come up with an alternative location.