Our History

Our story started back in 1985, when CAFT founder Tim Grundy was inspired to create a special place where terminally ill, disabled and socially disadvantaged children could have a break away from their circumstances. Tim was inspired whilst donating toys to a local centre supporting young children, he asked “Is there anything else these children need?” The response: “What these children need is a holiday, but they’ll never get the opportunity.”

In 1989 after four years of fundraising, Booth Bank Farm, a 17th century farmhouse set in the heart of the Cheshire countryside was purchased at auction. in 1992, after a further three years of hard work renovating, The Children’s Adventure Farm Trust was ready to receive the first children for a holiday at the Farm. Here is what we have been up to since…

1985

CAFT is founded and the fundraising begins.

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1989

Booth Bank Farm is purchased.
The fundraising continues for renovation and rebuilding work.

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1992

Official opening of The Adventure Farm. The first children come for a holiday.

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1999

Our Knutsford Charity Shop opens on Canute Square.

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2000

Sir Bobby Charlton becomes the President of CAFT and officially opens our new Sports Hall.

2001

Multi-sensory Suite and Adventure Playground are opened. The CAFT website is launched.

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2002

New charity video produced with assistance of Sir Bobby Charlton.

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2003

Funding is secured for new Respite Care Facility, which will see a total refurbishment of the Courtyard Flats.

2004

Official opening of the new Respite Care Facility, top of the range specialist equipment in a homely environment for children with complex and severe disabilities. The new CAFT website is launched.

2006

HRH Countess of Wessex visits to open the new Booth Bank Gang Trail and celebrates Sir Bobby’s birthday.

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2009

The Adventure Farm finally succeeds in opening its’ doors all year round. 34 holidays are offered to groups of children, and children with their families. Numerous Activity Days are provided, as well as 20 Christmas Parties.

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2010

CAFT celebrates its’ 25th Anniversary.

2011

Holidays are increased to 42, our facilities continue to be improved with major work undertaken on our BBQ area and Sensory garden. The year finished with 22 absolutely amazing Christmas fun days.

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2012

With help and support from our friends at HSBC, the CAFT Nature Trail was transformed in 2012. We were provided with both enthusiastic volunteers and vital funds so that our wooded area could become a haven for wildlife. The addition of a fully accessible aviary, complete with Japanese and Button Quails and Golden Pheasant, ensures a welcoming, educational and unusual area for all children to enjoy.

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2013

A fully inclusive wheelchair roundabout was fitted to the Adventure Playground in 2013. Thanks to the significant donations from SAP (UK) Ltd and the Brian Kennedy Trust who provided us with the means to provide this fantastic piece of equipment.

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2014

This year we welcomed two new patrons to the CAFT family, Melanie and John Bishop and we are very proud to welcome such lovely and funny patrons to our already impressive list.

2015

The multi-sensory suite refurbishment was completed in 2015. New LED lights, projectors and fibre optics were fitted along with a new bathroom.

2016

We welcomed seven new additions to the CAFT family in 2016. With the help of a kind donation from local ladies networking group 20/20, seven pygmy goats set up home in the CAFT paddock.

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2017

A brand new minibus was added to the fleet of CAFT vehicles. We were able to purchase the fully adapted bus because of the kind generosity of the Cheshire Freemasons. The bus was unveiled by our President, Sir Bobby Charlton and his wife, Lady Norma.