Highfield House Farm, based in Ashover in Derbyshire, has opened the café in response to customer demand, using a £70,000 loan secured through the bank’s participation in the Government’s Funding for Lending Scheme.
Farm owners David and Sylvia Prince and their son Matt combined the NatWest loan with a £70,000 grant from the Bolsover North East Derbyshire LEADER Programme to develop a 48-seat, 900-square-foot cafe. The new café has resulted in the creation of three jobs and is expected to increase the business’ turnover by 33% in the first year alone.
The Princes have owned the 110-acre farm, which specialises in breeding pedigree sheep, since 1986, and opened the on-site farm shop 12 years later. The shop sells a wide range of local produce, including lamb, bacon – cured on the farm ‒ jam, chutney, honey, cheese, flour and vegetables.
Somewhere to sit and eat
David said: “With so many customers telling us they wanted somewhere to sit and eat, we knew there would be value in it. I approached Rachel from NatWest and she was very encouraging and helped us straight away.”
David also secured a further £32,500 loan from NatWest to invest in a second wind turbine ‒ due to save the business £600 per month in energy costs.
Rachel Borlace, relationship manager for NatWest, said: “David, Sylvia and Matt had an exciting new project and we were more than happy to help. It’s a great, well-loved family business and I’m proud to have supported them through this phase of growth.”