Fundraising Dinner Hosted by Yeo Valley

12 September 2019


We had a wonderful evening full of soil health, food, entertainment and much more at Yeo Valley in September. Thanks from the whole SSA team to everyone that helped us to make Thursday night's event such a success.

We see the night as a celebration of the community we've created, progress made so far and the commitment to continue working together to achieve healthy, sustainable soils across the UK.

In particular we would like to give a huge thank you to our partners and supporters, Yeo Valley, who were so instrumental in the establishment of the SSA. We were delighted to be able to host you all in their beautiful canteen and want to thank them for their ongoing support and generosity.

Thanks to local producers Equinox Kombucha, Juniper Gin, Aldwick Estate Wine, Lye Cross Dairy and Homewood Cheeses. We were also pleased to announce our new partnership with the Real Olive Company whose delicious olives perfectly complemented our welcome cocktails.

Weleda supplied goody bags and we'd like to thank Neals Yard, SoilBioLab, Riverford, Craig Sams & CarbonGold, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Eden Project, Knepp Estate, George Monbiot, Pukka Teas, Salina Jane Art, Huskup, the Wave, Somerset Wildlife Trust, Sarah & Clive Warren, the Horticultural Trades Association, Ted Green and Peter Gabriel for the fantastic array of raffle and auction prizes.

Your contributions made all the difference, doubling funds raised on the night to over £20,000.

This will go towards the continuation of our soil health projects linked with the supply chain, carbon sequestration and climate change, biodiversity and more.

Thank you to our star speaker, Tim Smit, who provided enlightening words of wisdom as always; and to our auctioneer Tim Hector (Cooper & Tanner) who did us proud with an entertaining and at times off the wall auction experience! Big thanks also to our wonderful photographer Tory.

Finally, huge thanks to all who hosted tables, namely Yeo Valley, Burges Salmon, Triodos Bank, Weleda, Pukka and the Real Olive Company; we were delighted to catch up with familiar faces, meet new people and start conversations that we hope to continue over the foreseeable future. If you have anything you would like to add please don't hesitate to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Scroll down for further details of the auction prizes our winning bidders took away on the night!

LOT 1: THE FORAGER BIKE

A one-off, unique prototype British handmade bicycle created by by award-winning bike frame builders Sven Cycles in collaboration with Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall.

LOT 2: A WEEK IN ST. MAWES, CORNWALL

A week in Brooks Cottage in St Mawe - luxury accommodation for 6 guests.

For further information on cottages and availability visit the Portscatho Cottages site.

LOT 3: VISIT THE EDEN PROJECT + LUNCH WITH SIR TIM SMIT KBE

Tickets for four to visit the Eden Project in Cornwall: nestled in a huge crater, massive Biomes house the largest rainforest in captivity, whilst stunning plants, exhibitions and stories serve as a backdrop to the striking contemporary gardens and exciting year-round family events.

The Eden Project is the brainchild of Sir Tim Smit, also behind the restoration of the Lost Gardens of Heligan, as well as being an active environmental campaigner.

LOT 4: WILDLIFE SAFARI + LUNCH AT KNEPP CASTLE ESTATE

The rewilded landscape of Knepp Castle Estate is home to deer, ponies, longhorn cattle and boar as well as a host of storks, owls, bats, butterflies and other wildlife.

Safaris, wildlife tours and overnight stays are all available at the project, instigated by Isabella Tree, author of the wonderful Wilding book about the history of the Knepp project, and Charlie Burrell.

Find more on the project here and Knepp Safaris here.

LOT 5: TOUR OF STONELYNK ORGANICS & BLUEBELL WOOD WITH CRAIG SAMS

A walk in a bluebell wood in Sussex and a visit to the Stonelynk Organics vegetable farm.

Craig Sams (founder, Whole Earth Foods & etc) and partner Jo (joint founder of Green & Blacks with Craig) host a walk in Stonelynk Wood during the bluebell season (mid-April to late May) followed by an organic lunch in their walled garden in Hastings Old Town.

Stonelynk Organics thrives on land that benefited in 2014 from an application of 10 tonnes of Carbon Gold Biochar Soil Improver per hectare - see the difference with your own eyes!

LOT 6: THE SOILBIOLAB PLATINUM SOIL SAMPLE EXPERIENCE

Put your soil through full biology and chemistry testing courtesy of scientists at the SoilBioLabl which provides chemical and physical analysis of the soil sample including pH, texture, soil organic matter, available nutrients, exchangeable nutrients, total nutrients and cation exchange capacity.

A comprehensive Microbiology analysis of the sample including moisture content, total and active concentrations of bacteria and fungi, nematodes, protozoa and mycorrhizal fungi is also available, as is the chance to look at your own soil at up to 400x magnification!

LOT 7: FARM WALK WITH GUY SINGH-WATSON + LUNCH AT RIVERFORD KITCHEN

Riverford Organics farm founder Guy Singh-Watson, self-confessed veg nerd and organics fanatic is responsible for growing Riverford from one man & a wheelbarrow to a 50,000+ customer veg box delivery service.

Enjoy lunch at the award-winning field kitchen situated on the farm.

LOT 8: SAVERNAKE FOREST ANCIENT TREE WALK WITH TED GREEN

Savernake Forest near Marlborough is a surviving remnant of an ancient royal forest, site of special scientific interest, location of Henry VIII’s first meeting with Jane Seymour in 1535 and home to some of the most ancient trees in Britain.

Explore and learn more about these trees, some dating back more than 1000 years, with founder of the Ancient Tree Forum, Ted Green.

LOT 9: UNIQUE & ORIGINAL SOIL ARTWORK

Signed, limited edition lino print:

A Teaspoon of Soil

Hand produced by artist, illustrator and printmaker Salina Jane.

Find more of Salina’s original prints in her Etsy shop. After the auction, 25% of all profits made from sales of this print will be donated to the SSA.

With many thanks to Yeo Valley and our other supporters & contributors for making this evening possible.

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The SSA is a not-for-profit company limited by guarantee. We decided not to set up a charity because that would limit some activities such as campaigning on government policies. With a not-for-profit company the directors don’t benefit from profits and money raised is spent on company aims.

SUSTAINABLE SOILS ALLIANCE NON-PROFIT COMMUNITY INTEREST COMPANY NO. 10802764