THE site of a much-loved city farm which went into liquidation last year is set for a new lease of life.

A charity which supports vulnerable individuals, LOVE learning, has taken over the City of Edinburgh Council site previously occupied by Gorgie City Farm.

The new venture will not be a working farm, as no animals will be killed for produce. Instead it will be a petting zoo and animal therapy centre with projects for mental health volunteers to work on. There will also be a food bank and social enterprise cafe.

Gorgie City Farm went bust in November last year and liquidator Shona Campbell of MHA Henderson Loggie led the search for a new operator for the site on behalf of the council.

Lynn Bell, CEO of LOVE learning, said: “We are incredibly excited to be taking on such a treasured resource as Gorgie City Farm. At LOVE learning we seek to improve the education and life chances of vulnerable children, young people and adults, as well as their families.

“Not only will the farm remain open seven days a week and remain free, we will also provide a range of exciting education, environmental and social care programmes supporting vulnerable children and adults. This will include learning programmes within a new skills academy, social prescribing, animal therapy and employability projects.

“In addition, our educational centre will engage with local communities on environmental programmes around farming and food production and our intention is to have a food bank and social enterprise cafe. It will be a real community hub.

“We would like to commend the massive community support and fully recognise the love there clearly is for Gorgie City Farm. We cannot wait to get in and to work with the council and other key stakeholders to get it up and running.”

LOVE learning’s services are predominantly provided to people who missed out on education for a variety of reasons, with a specific focus on those with additional support needs.

It seeks to raise their level of attainment through an integrated approach, bridging the gap between education and social care, addressing not only their learning needs, but also their health and wellbeing and offers 24-hour crisis support services.

The charity is supported by two businesses within the LOVE group who provide professional training and recruitment, as well as care provision.