PLANNED changes to a community farm aimed at saving £200,000 and allowing the facility to continue under a different set-up have been outlined.

Torfaen council has proposed reducing its subsidy to Greenmeadow Community Farm in Cwmbran by £200,000 as part of budget cuts.

The council contributes £300,000 a year to the running of the farm, which needs needs £800,000 a year to operate.

But staff have expressed fears the funding cut will "change things drastically" at the farm.

A petition to 'save' the farm has been signed by nearly 3,000 people.

A task and finish group has now set out preferred changes to the farm to deliver the savings.

A report says the changes, to be discussed by councillors later this week, will retain "a community facility of some form."

Among the proposals are changes to the farm's staffing structure, saving around £48,000.

Council documents say this will "undoubtedly result in redundancies or redeployment."


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Using the site to locate council activities currently situated elsewhere will be explored, potentially allowing the authority to reduce its property portfolio, is also proposed.

Disposing of surplus land and using the money from the sale to reinvest in the farm will also be considered.

Other proposals are to review the catering facility, possibly enabling the provision of "minimal catering facilities" such as vending machines for drinks and pre-prepared snacks in the shop, and reviewing opening hours of the farm.

Previous plans to reduce the range of animals at the farm have not been recommended for further consideration, though.

A council report says: "The task and finish group have considered many aspects of the current offer the farm provides since its first meeting on January 29 and are confident the farmwill be unable to continue in its current form with a £200,000 budget reduction and no access to capital investment.

"The process followed over the past two months has been difficult but productive, the recommendations put forward will retain a community facility that can be developed over time and in the short term will achieve the proposed savings."

The report warns if the proposed savings are not supported cuts will have to be made to the social care and housing budget.

Councillors will consider the proposals at a special meeting on Thursday.