A CITY farm in the heart of the capital is reportedly set to close with bosses blaming the rising costs and cuts to council funding.

Gorgie Farm in Edinburgh will shut its doors next month, according to STV News.

After three years on the site in the west of the city, the charity Love Learning, which operates the farm will hand back the lease, the broadcaster reported.

Love Learning's chief executive Lynn Bell told STV: "We have tried everything to avoid this situation, however Edinburgh City Council has withdrawn crucial funding and with Covid and now cost of living crisis we do not believe we are able to support the farm alone."

Edinburgh council said it has not directly funded the farm since 2020.

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All animals will be rehomed, bosses have said.  

Council leader Cammy Day said: "It’s really sad to hear Gorgie Farm is in financial difficulty.

"Sadly, they’re not alone in feeling the devastating effects of the pandemic, with many organisations struggling to cope with falling visitor numbers and rising costs.

“As a council, we stepped in to support the venue three years ago – giving it a new lease of life and allowing Love Learning to take over – and have offered to work with them again.

"We’ve already discussed potential new operating models with them and are due to meet again early next month.

“The capital city of Edinburgh remains the lowest-funded local authority in Scotland.

"As a result, our city and the essential services we provide remain under immense pressure.

"This is exacerbated in our 2023/24 budgets that are looking at at least £70 million of cuts from the Scottish Government leaving us to face some extremely difficult decisions as we look to set budgets for the coming year.”

The site is owned by Edinburgh council and has had long-standing financial problems.

It was previously operated by the Gorgie City Farm charity, which went into liquidation in 2019 under insurmountable financial pressures, Insider reported at the time.

It is home to a number of goats, pigs, chickens, guinea pigs, ferrets, alpacas, sheep and other animals.

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Gorgie City Farm has occupied the spot next to the railway line since 1977 and its official website claims tens of thousands of people pass through its gates every year.

The spot was also threatened with closure in 2016 and was saved by a donations appeal which raised £100,000.

According to its website, the farm had ambitions of providing “social prescribing and wellbeing therapies in partnership with the NHS, mental health and holistic therapies, and employability projects”.

The National has approached Love Learning for further comment.