Forty Hall Vineyards
Forty Hall Vineyard has put the unlikely location of Enfield, North London on the map when it comes to organic English wines.
This is the only commercial scale vineyard in London, the first in the capital since the Middle Ages in fact. And they’re doing great things besides making top-quality still and sparkling wines too.
Based at Capel Manor College, Forty Hall Vineyard is primarily volunteer-led. That’s because an ecotherapy project is woven into the production of their wines, which all profits help support.
Volunteers immerse themselves in the horticultural activity of the vineyard, get out in a beautiful green setting and keep active – all of which can give mental and physical health a boost. It’s an opportunity for people to make new connections too – another positive for the local community’s wellbeing.
And to create the award-winning London Sparkling Brut, they use Chardonnay, Pinot Meunier and Pinot Noir and follow the traditional Champagne method, allowing fermentation to happen in the bottle.
Sustainability is a priority too. Forty Hall Vineyard crafts their wine using eco-friendly farming and organic vine-growing practices, with as little intervention as possible. So if natural wines and supporting good causes are your jam, give these a try.
The determination of wine enthusiast and social entrepreneur Sarah Vaughan-Roberts got Forty Hall Vineyard started back in 2009. She knew about successful urban vineyards in other cities like Paris and set about sourcing a space for a London equivalent, which she found at Forty Hall Farm.
She always envisaged a not-for-profit vineyard which benefitted and invested in the local community. Volunteers from all walks of life – from retirees to young full-time workers and particularly those with mental health issues – come to help out and leave feeling happier and healthier.