Entrance sign for Greenmeadow Community Farm
Greenmeadow Community Farm Credit: Cwmbran Life

The new manager of Greenmeadow Community Farm has previously worked at leading tourist attractions in  South West England.

Torfaen Council have appointed Mike Coe, who has previously worked in senior managerial and commercial roles at Bristol Zoo, Bristol Aquarium and Westonbirt, the National Arboretum.

The community farm has been closed since November 2022. The original £1.7m development plans were put on hold due to rising costs. Last September the council approved a £1.6m budget increase to transform the farm into a profit-making enterprise by 2029/30.

The farm is due to reopen in April 2025 and will include:

  • a transformed Haybarn suitable for weddings, parties and community events
  • a new all-weather indoor play barn with play equipment and improved outdoor adventure play area
  • a new barn for the animals
  • new and extended café
  • a revamped shop to sell and promote local produce and suppliers
  • new woodland trails and sensory paths
  • Improved education experiences
  • improvements to site accessibility.

Mike said: ‘‘Connecting people with nature is a real passion. I know the farm is much-loved locally and the vision to make the farm one of the premier visitor attractions in South-East Wales is an opportunity that really attracted me to the role.

“I have spent the majority of my career either launching or transforming visitor attractions to make them commercially sustainable. With the exciting vision and plans for the farm, I’m confident I can use my experience to help attract visitors all year-round with a real focus on the outdoor visitor experience. The plans for the farm will also meet the demand for more all-weather activity, providing memorable experiences with the animals, play in the great outdoors and put the farm on financially solid ground.”

Councillor Fiona Cross, Torfaen’s cabinet member for communities, said: “Mike has worked at some of the most popular tourist attractions in the South-west and has a track record of making them successful. He has demonstrated significant commercial acumen in his previous roles and his experience of leading teams and working with volunteers makes it a great appointment for the farm.”

Coley Hill Consultants, who have been working on the new concept and vision for Greenmeadow Community Farm since March 2023 commented: “We’re delighted Mike is joining the team, he brings a huge amount of knowledge and experience and we are very much looking forward to working with him and the rest of the staff at the farm on this exciting project. We can’t wait to share the new visitor experiences at the Farm when visitors are welcomed back in Spring 2025.”

The planned opening for the farm is April 2025.