Urban farm project planned for Pitsmoor and Burngreave

Martin Obodo outside the property being developed as an urban farm at Burngreave
Martin Obodo outside the property being developed as an urban farm at Burngreave

A Sheffield man is urging residents to back a project to transform an empty house into an urban farm.

Martin Edward Obodo has launched the Aquapon House and Gardens Project to restore Osborn House into a working farm.

The 29-year-old, from Pitsmoor, is hoping to set up the project with the aid of a crowdfunding campaign.

He is seeking donations of £1 from 5,000 people which he will use to cover the first few months’ rent on the building.

In return for their donation, donors will be given a fish and a plant once the project has begun.

Members will breed fish and grow vegetables on the farm - much of which will be used to create gourmet cat food for the area’s stray cats.

Vegetable boxes will be put together for residents and businesses.

There will also be areas for poulty, apiaries for bees and plots for organic vegetables, when the project is fully up and running.

Martin, an IT worker at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital, said: “Aquapon House is looking for 20 members to live and work on an urban farm with a mission to look after the cats of Burngreave and Pitsmoor.

“There is a real problem with stray cats in the area. 
“Skipton Road is currently home to three kittens which have wandered in off the street.

“We’re going to get to the point where there is no room for the cats and some will have to be destroyed.

“The cat food will help to address this problem. We want to ensure no more cats go hungry in our local area and we are doing what we can to help the community in these uncertain times.”

Martin said that a handful of people have already signed up to be part of the project and he hopes a public meeting will allow more people to get involved.

A meeting will be held at 136 Burngreave Road, tonight from 6pm to 9pm.

Martin said: “I have been doing some door knocking as part of the crowdfunding campaign.

“I’ve only managed a few streets at the moment. It is hard when you’re working nine to five to fit it in, but I’m hopeful of reaching the target before the deadline I’ve set myself of the beginning of January.”

n Visit www.aquaponproject.com to find out more about the project.