In November last year, myself and 4 other photography students started working with Newham City Farm, as part of our third year BA Photography degree. Our brief was to work collaboratively with a community in need, using our photography skills. I actually stumbled across the farm whilst walking to uni during a DLR strike, and when we all went back to visit as a group, we really fell in love with the place, and asked the farm manager Theresa Salmon whether she would be interested in working with us. We pitched a few ideas, including improving the farm's online presence and social media, taking photos of the animals, facilities and events, videoing staff, and holding an exhibition. Once we got the go ahead from Theresa, it was full steam ahead for the next couple of months whilst we put all our plans into action. During our time working with the farm we made connections with local businesses and charities such as Active Newham and City Airport, and even managed to get the attention of local Labour MP Stephen Timms, and Prof. Ed Berman, founder of the city farm movement. Ed ended up being Guest of Honour at our exhibition, and gave an inspiring speech to everyone who came along. Our main goal was to do as much as we could in a short space of time to generate interest in the farm, culminating in our exhibition which took place in the last week of January. The exhibition was a resounding success, and the Newham Recorder came down to interview us and take photos, which was a great way to generate further publicity. Although our project has now finished, we've got further plans to help the farm, including running a half term photography workshop, and taking our images to other local venues to be exhibited. The whole experience has been really rewarding for all of us, and we've enjoyed working within the local community, with a positive result and feedback."
Newham Farm Project was run by Emily Faulder, Emily Usher, Aanchal Regmi, Kay Davies and Jade Church.