Ploughing the Wheat Growing Field – Friday 9th February

The Friends of Ruskin Park are growing heritage wheat and crops again in Ruskin Park. Together with the Friends of Brixton Windmill and Brockwell Bake Association, it brings alive the life cycle of natural and traditional food production. We are keen to have local schools and people joining in with this unique project.

On Friday, 7th February, we welcomed Nobby and Heath, two huge shire horses descended from the medieval war horse who, with Operation Centaur, ploughed the patch of land designated for growing heritage wheat grains, close to Ferndene Road. Members of the public were welcome to watch the activities. The project was featured on BBC London News that evening. You can watch this on BBC iPlayer here (skip to 21:01).

The horses will return on Saturday, 17th February, 10am to 2pm to harrow the soil, when volunteers will be sowing the seeds. There will be refreshments and a chance to meet more of the key people to find out more about our wheat growing and the horses.

Later, we will erect a more robust fence around the area and in August we will have a big volunteer day to harvest, thresh and winnow the wheat grain, followed by a celebratory harvest festival in the park in September 2018.

All dates are subject to weather conditions. If you are interested in getting involved, please contact Charlotte at or call 07841 830463.

Photo Gallery

Photography with thanks to Richard Baker Photography

Additional information

The horses come from Operation Centaur, a charity based in Richmond Park protecting now rare traditional working horses and equine-assisted therapy, to improve the health and wellbeing of communities.

Using horses instead of machinery through traditional land management practices is a sustainable way to cultivate parkland, offering lower noise disturbance to wildlife and lower soil compaction. The Historic Royal Palaces and the Royal Parks have worked with these horses for 25 years on various conservation projects.

The project is in partnership with the Friends of Brixton Windmill and Brockwell Bake Association and will help develop our ongoing relationships with other food-growing projects in the local community.