People have been getting their hands dirty with an environmental charity at a community-owned farm near St Just as part of a food-related employment project.

Westcountry Rivers Trust (WRT) joined Bosavern Community Farm in St Just on Tuesday, March 30, to share soil health tips with students taking part in the farm’s Training and Work Experience Project.

Katie Kirk from Bosavern Community Farm said: “Our supported placements are for unemployed adults with an interest in horticulture.

“We provide practical work experience and training on the farm; creating opportunities to practice communication, teamwork, problem-solving and food-related skills, all of which boost confidence.

“Ultimately, we aim to help people move into formal training or employment in areas such as retail, catering, farming, horticulture, gardening, conservation, construction or grounds maintenance and we will soon be opening for new registrations for our next course in May to July.

“The sessions were very informative, perfectly pitched for our trainees from varying backgrounds and complemented our day-to-day work experience; explaining why we use the techniques we do on the farm and setting it within both a broader, environmental context.

“It was great that we also had the chance to get hands-on, digging soil inspection holes and comparing soil samples brought in from home.”

WRT has been working extensively across the region for more than 25 years to educate and support farming communities and individuals to implement best practices that have a positive outcome on water quality.

In 2019, it created the Devon and Cornwall Soils Alliance (DCSA) to build capacity and capability in soils advice across Devon and Cornwall.

WRT’s Cornwall fisheries team leader and senior land officer Giles Rickard said: “Integral to water quality is soil health and it has been very rewarding to share our knowledge with people who will hopefully go on to work in a variety of roles where an understanding of the plant-to-plate process will be useful.”

The students also heard from Bosavern board member Holly Whitelaw who delivered a talk on regenerative agriculture and the benefits for both climate and human health.

To find out how to get involved with WRT’s DCSA, visit or go to to find out about the next training course, email or call Katie on 01736 272367.

The project is funded by the European Union with support from Cornwall Council.