Bradford Garden Centre partners with family farming business for new butchery counter

Sarah Dwyer and Kathryn Timoney

A Bradford garden centre has partnered with an established Wakefield family farming business to enhance its food hall butchery offering. 

From April 28, Tong Garden Centre will introduce a new butchery department by partnering with award-winning Blacker Hall Farm. Operating within their recently rebranded Hearty’s Food Hall, it will feature an over the counter butchery service and Blacker Hall’s home-reared meat. 

Tong Garden Centre’s managing director  Mark Farnsworth said: “We’re very excited to team up with Blacker Hall Farm butchery within our food hall at Tong and are looking forward to delighting our customers with an extensive range of Yorkshire produce, including award-winning 21day old dry aged beef, dry-cured bacon, pork, lamb and free-range chicken. 

“We share Blacker Hall Farm’s ethos of providing customers with top quality, seasonal Yorkshire produce together with friendly service so it’s great to see the iconic Tong and Blacker Hall Farm brands coming together in this exciting enterprise.” 

Edward Garthwaite, who runs Blacker Hall Farm Shop and The Barn Café with his wife, Cheryl, said: “As fifth generation farmers and growers, we’re passionate about food and we truly believe that good meat comes from contented, well cared for animals and you really can taste the difference.

“This is our first venture into expanding our business beyond our farm shop in Wakefield and we’re delighted to have the opportunity to share the Blacker Hall Farm butchery experience with visitors to Hearty’s Food Hall at Tong.” 

Blacker Hall Farm at Tong will host a ‘Meat and Greet’ BBQ from 29 April 29 to May 2 and there will be a series of events, including tastings from other Yorkshire producers, over the following weekend to celebrate the collaboration. 

Tong Garden Centre occupies a 19-acre site in Tong village. It is one of Yorkshire’s biggest independent garden centres with 125,000 square feet of retail space and parking for up to 700 cars. 

The Garthwaite family welcomed their first customers to Blacker Hall Farm in 1999. They pride themselves on rearing, growing and making 80 per cent of everything they sell and sourcing the remainder from the best local farmers, producers and growers.

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