Farm Retail Tours 2018

The farm retail tours are a well-established part of the FARMA conference, giving attendees a great opportunity to get behind-the-scenes at some of the country's most interesting farm retailers.

Buses will be leaving the Forest Pines hotel promptly after breakfast. To make sure you are at the venue on time, why not join the other tour-goers on Sunday night's networking dinner. We aim to ensure that all tours will be back at the hotel by 6 pm ready for you to enjoy the FARMA party.

Each tour will have a facilitator; their role is to help you have a fun, enjoyable day whilst also getting a lot of information out of it to take back to your business. To make sure you get the most out of your visits, we limit the number attending any of the tours so make sure to book early to avoid disappointment.

Whether you are a new start-up farm shop or an established retailer, these tours are an invaluable way to explore some the best farm retailing case studies.



Monday 26 February

Coaches Depart Forest Pines Hotel at 08.30am, returning by 5.00pm (AGM is at 5.30pm on Monday).

Tour 1 - Retailing with Personality 

This tour offers the opportunity to look at some leading farm shops that have diversified or stand out for their excellent merchandising. Uncle Henrys have started a maze experience and a large pumpkin event. Doddington Hall now have a cycle shop and first class wedding venue. Hardys Farm Shop established over 45 years ago has been bringing the best in seasonal produce to their customers. Welbeck Farm Shop offers an award-winning butchery and is part of an extensive estate which includes The School of Artisan Food.



Tour 2 - Diversification

A look at venues who target the family market or have added accommodation. The Pink Pig has won many awards for their cafe and is increasingly targeting families with indoor play barn and farm attraction. Williams Den is a brand new attraction and, whilst not a farm shop, has adopted the latest thinking in play with rustic indoor wooden play and water features, wood fired pizza oven and impressive facilities for families. Drewtons is a well-established farm shop who run a fabulous restaurant and have diversified into cottage lets. The Balloon Tree whose roots in growing and retailing are well respected offer a children's play area and seasonal events for families.



Tour 3 - Food Retailing Best in Class 

This tour allows you to really dig deep into some of the most experienced businesses in the region. Hinchliffe's is Britain's oldest Farm Shop. The business was established in 1929, and the Farm Shop opened in 1974. A major fire in 2010 means they are currently trading out of temporary marquees with plans for a new build.  Blacker Hall were named Great Taste Shop of the Year 2016 by the Guild of Fine Food, around 75% of everything the sell is made on site. You will see a work in progress as they will be in the middle of a significant redevelopment. Farmer Copleys, is synonymous with diversity and fantastic quality. Always developing, they host one of the UK's biggest pumpkin festivals and have recently opened a new cafe and restaurant by night concept. Heather and Rob will share their story and give you permission to ask the questions that will really make a difference to your business. The tour includes a brief stop at Cannon Hall Farm to see their extensive farm shop. For a more in-depth look at this award winning diversified farm business see Tour 4. 

Tour 4 - Cannon Hall Farm - Diversification success story

Spend the whole day at Cannon Hall Farm exploring how the business has grown to become an award winning farm shop, attraction, restaurant and events site. With behind the scenes tours, presentations from the Nicholson family and their departmental managers and an expert facilitator to bring the whole day together.

08.30 Coach Departs Forest Pines Hotel
09.45 Arrive Tea/Coffee
10.15 The history of CHF - Robert Nicholson
10.30 Education @ CHF - Farmer Darrell
10.45 Tour - Linda Wetherill & Katie Hampshire
12.30 Lunch in the White Bull
1.45 Employee engagement and communication in the retail sector - Katie Hampshire
2.00 Farm shop numbers - Dave Sinclair
2.15 SWOT analysis for CHF shop - Robert Nicholson
2.30 Q & A
2.45 Tea/Coffee Cakes
3.15 Depart




FARMA reserves the right to amend the tour itineraries at any point.