Update on plans for tea room and museum at historic Nottinghamshire site

A historic farmhouse in Nottingham proposes to open as a community hub that will help keep the area’s history alive. Greasley Castle Farm has submitted plans to open a museum dedicated to the history of the site and the region, a tea room, a reception hall and workshops for local businesses.

The site, between Watnall and Moorgreen, is itself steeped in history, comprising a Grade II listed farmhouse, castle remains and baptismal font, all set in a listed ancient monument. Plans would see the ground floor of the farm transformed into an interactive tea room that would not only serve local produce, but invite young people to learn more about the ‘farm to fork’ concept and develop their baking skills.

The existing barns would be converted into a museum to display historical information and artefacts about the site and region, a reception hall and four workshops available to small businesses. Visitors would also have access to the land of the arable farm which comprises almost 1,000 acres of land including fields, woods and lakes.

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The plans are the vision of farm owner Malcolm Hodgkinson, who has lived in the area all his life but only learned of its history when he was 40 years old. He said: ‘When I was a boy my sister and I didn’t even know Greasley Castle existed and there are young people today growing up in that same position.

“There is a lot of forgotten history in the area and I want to help bring it to life and keep it alive for generations to come. If the plans are approved, people will be able to experience how the site originally housed a medieval mansion before the castle was built in the 1340s.

“Visitors will be able to learn about the important inhabitants of the site and take a look at some of the incredible local artifacts that have been recovered. These will be displayed alongside old farm equipment showing the agricultural importance of the site.

Greasley Castle Farm

“The proposed plans also include a tea room, but I wanted to create something interactive and different to give young people the chance to discover the ingredients and take pride in making their own cakes and breads for their families. It will be fantastic to welcome small local businesses to the workshops which would suit those who make and sell things locally, such as blacksmiths, jewellers, framers – anything that could thrive in a rural setting.

“The farm is already a big part of the local community and has been home to a local scout group for over 30 years, the Castle Greasley Archery Club and a local donkey and pony rescue organisation. These plans will make the farm even more of a community hub that will help educate people on incredibly important topics and provide a whole new experience in the area.

A planning application has been submitted to Broxtowe City Council by leading property consultancy Fisher German on behalf of the farm. Spokesman Scott O’Dell said: “Malcolm has a fantastic vision for creating a valuable community asset that will benefit generations of local people.

“This is a historically significant site, so we have worked hard to ensure that proposals involve minimal alterations to existing buildings to ensure they are preserved with little intervention. We are also keeping new buildings to a minimum. It’s a really positive app with a strong focus on the local heritage and agriculture of the area.