Clynfyw Community Benefit Society
Ffurflen addo Cyfranddaliadau neu Benthyciad
Shares or Loan Pledge Form
Introduction to Clynfyw CBS by Jim Bowen:
For anyone who has followed Clynfyw’s evolution, it will be no surprise to learn that we are thinking of the future.
For a long time we have been wondering about what happens to Clynfyw in the years to come, not just the care farm bit but the farm as whole. And after a lot of discussion with my parents and sisters the idea of running a series of community share offers seems a good way of planning a sensible long term future for the farm while enabling it to become more of a community asset with long term benefits for all involved and the wider community.
Community Share Offers have been going for some time and are particularly popular around here. Here is a link for more info on how community share offers work in case you are interested. (https://wales.coop/what-we-do/toolkits-and-guides/community shares step-by-step/).
All being well we aim to formally start the share offer at the start of 2022. We plan to use Ethex as the platform. They have a 95% success rate, for example with Kindling Farm who have been helping us with this and who raised 140% of what they were hoping for in just a few months. (https://www.ethex.org.uk/invest/kindling-farm).
Before then, we are running a Pledge Campaign which will enable us to demonstrate community backing in a Community Ownership Fund application.
The fund has a window closing in December from June 2021 and it is our aim to raise funds from this scheme to help with the Clynfyw Share Offer. The pledges will help demonstrate the involvement and commitment of the wider community to our plans.
The success of our the campaign depends on community involvement right from the start. And that means now! We have been planning this for a while, talking to people, listening and learning but there is still much more to do.
Fordhall Farm have been helping us. They were one of the first places to run a share offer to save their farm this back in 2005, and they now have over 8,000 owners (https://www.fordhallfarm.com/). Theirs is a hugely inspiring success story. We are also getting support from the Wales Cooperative Centre.
So we have set up a new organisation -Clynfyw Community Benefit Society
(Clynfyw CBS)-which will be running the share offer and which will become the owner and landlord for the people who live at Clynfyw and also the care farm. We have lots of work to do, and to ensure we are truly community-led, our Business Plan is evolving following each Visioning Event and Engagement Day. If you are interested in getting involved in some way, please let us know.
Change is challenging, and the future is a scary thing. With evidence of the climate crisis increasingly apparent, land use is changing. People are moving. Food production will be different. Food security and sovereignty are all the more important. Networking, skill sharing and collaboration are essential. Clynfyw has already made headway in these areas and we see that a community share offer would be a good way of engaging more people in what is happening here now, while also ensuring their involvement to help shape what happens next. We want to contribute and for our direction to be shaped by the needs of those around us. And we want to make sure that vulnerable people are at the heart of the changes here to make sure they are not marginalised and ignored as times get harder.
We have big ambitions for the work of Clynfyw CBS. This is detailed in the evolving Business Plan. We intend for everyone involved to benefit, from the tenants, the investors and the community as a whole. For investors there is the obvious benefit of a return of up to 4% return on investments, which is more than you can get on most ethical investments these days, but hopefully the social and environmental gains will be tempting too. We will be holding open days and zoom meetings in the weeks to come so do come with more information.
We are at the start of a daunting, but exciting journey and we hope you will be interested in learning more and joining us in shaping the future. If so, please let in touch.
Please note that this is a community initiative with the objective of purchasing a section of Clynfyw Farm in Abercych to run it as a community-orientate farm.
Clynfyw Farm is 395 acres in size (244 being agricultural land and 151 being woodland.) It has been an award winning pioneer of community focussed farm diversification for over thirty years.
Clynfyw Community Benefit Society has been established to run community share offers which we hope, over time, will enable the farm to become community owned, honouring its current uses, while focusing on community-focussed resilience, regenerative land use so that it can be enjoyed as a secure community asset in perpetuity.
The main objective now is to purchase the first part of the farm and ensure that the ownership is transferred to the community as soon as possible.
The Wales Co-op has assisted us to create a Community Benefit Society with a community benefit shareholding constitution. This will allow us to draw in future community support funding. You may purchase more than one share, but the voting rights will be on a one person one vote basis (not one vote per share).