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Customer stories

Dartington Dairy,

What does it take to produce an award-winning ice cream?

A lot of dedication, tast-testing, early mornings plus a decent herd of goats and cows.

At the Dartington Estate in Devon, farming couple Jon and Lynne Perkin took on the tenancy at Old Parsonage Farm in March 2015 and set about transforming the farm into a commercial dairy via their herd of goatlings and the management of the Sharpham Jersey herd of cows later that year.

In 2016 the Dartington Dairy was launched in 2016, working with a local specialist to make ice cream from their first batch...

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Who doesn’t love a British seaside holiday?

Almost everyone has a fondness of going to the coast, be that as a child or making new adventures with your family in the future. The staycation trend seems to be here to stay as us Brits have fallen back in love with holidaying closer to home.

This is great news for seaside and holiday-let business owners like Martin. He is one of many FOLK2FOLK borrowers that has taken advantage of the growth in the domestic tourist industry and demand in holiday lets in Cornwall. Recently, we have seen a boom in lending to...

You wouldn’t normally associate farming and golf, but they do share a key attribute...land management.

In 2015, Wrangaton Golf Club, a members’ run course at the time, fell into administration and came up for sale. A local farming family immediately saw an opportunity to transform the course into something different – a more inclusive environment with greater flexibility for participation - having previously built a 9 hole course 15 years before. The plan was to improve the club house and make the course a more open and friendly operation. The course would charge membership...

Dartmoor Inn

Having worked together for 20 years, business partners Philip and Andrew have earned and grown their reputations through their time at the Dartmoor Inn, having turned it into a well-respected gastro-pub over the years, mainly thanks to Andrew and Philip’s cooking and making the Inn a great place to stay, eat or just pop in for a pint after a walk on the moor.

In 2014, Philip decided to go into a business partnership with Andrew and create their own catering business as the opportunity to buy the Inn together became an option for them. The business plan was to run and...

James Yeo Cabinet Makers

James started work milking cows at the age of fourteen when he left school but by the time he was seventeen, he decided that he didn’t want to work on a farm for the rest of his professional life. So James went back to college and studied woodwork. He then worked as an apprentice to Sawle and Vaughen cabinet makers. In time the owner retired and he took on his business with another partner. After a few years, his partner bought James out.

After 12 months of working for another cabinet maker in London James decided to rent a workshop in Devon and started designing and...

Richard's Story - Borrower

Richard
"Sharp & Tappin is a precision engineering company and has been going for 11 years. The business has two parts: one is onboard cameras for ships and the other is composite blade saws for the aerospace industry. The business was set up by one of my sons and one of his friends' fathers and I joined it. The business was expanding and we desperately needed more space. We were renting units but we didn’t want to rent more space as this was dead money, instead we wanted to buy some land and build on it.

In 2007, we bought development land, Natwest were going to lend us...
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Jim’s Story - Lender

Jim
"I started my working life as a pilot in the Royal Air Force and after a 10 year commission I went to work in a building society which had a business arrangement with Parnalls solicitors who arranged private mortgages.  If their clients had money to save Parnalls would recommend they save with my building society and in return I would provide their clients with mortgages. This was very standard practice in the 1980s and was the way we all did business in those days.

I then set up my own finance broking company and was already lending a bit of my own money through Parnalls when...
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Pam's Story - Borrower

Pam
"In 2009, I, together with my husband Robert and daughter Robyn, bought a pub which I had previously owned with my husband and sister in law and brother in law and sold in 2001. Since then it had had two other owners and the whole pub business had completely changed. When we first ran it, people could still smoke inside and most of our profits came from the drinking trade which was phenomenal.

The drinking trade is no longer viable as a business model on its own. The “pub” business is now as much about the food and accommodation. We had taken a loan with NatWest to buy...
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Nick's Story - Borrower

Nick
Originally I was a farmer, but after Foot and Mouth affected us we had to diversify and Folk2Folk have enabled me to do this.  

I have borrowed money through Folk2Folk since they began and think I am probably one of their most active borrowers and certainly one of the first. I have used the money to make improvements to my land, buy a digger and renovate a large barn which now houses a business providing accommodation for autistic adults. There are fifty full time members of staff, ten of whom stay overnight. Social Services love our barn and we are now planning on working with them...
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Customer Stories

  • Richard's Story - Borrower

    "Sharp & Tappin is a precision engineering company and has been going for 11 years. The business has two parts: one is onboard cameras for ships and the other is composite blade saws...
  • Jim’s Story - Lender

    "I started my working life as a pilot in the Royal Air Force and after a 10 year commission I went to work in a building society which had a business arrangement with Parnalls solicitors who...
  • Pam's Story - Borrower

    "In 2009, I, together with my husband Robert and daughter Robyn, bought a pub which I had previously owned with my husband and sister in law and brother in law and sold in 2001. Since then it...
  • Nick's Story - Borrower

    Originally I was a farmer, but after Foot and Mouth affected us we had to diversify and Folk2Folk have enabled me to do this.  

    I have borrowed money through Folk2Folk since they began and...
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