In 1978 by-pass plans in Sheffield, UK were finally dropped. But by this time, residents living on its proposed route had faced 15 years of uncertainty and insecurity. Their homes weren't eligible for improvement grants, and repairs didn't seem worth doing. The long period of blight had made it too late to save the immediate neighbourhood from demolition.
Heeley Residents Association wanted to see the land used to make Heeley a better place to live. During 1980 the Association developed the idea of a city farm, and gradually won support for it. Work began on site in July 1981 and the Farm was founded.