Photo credit: Sophie Hughes, 2022

Date:  Friday, 18 November 2022
Times:  11:00 – 16:00
Location:  Haughley, Suffolk
Transport:  Attendees are responsible for making their own way to Suffolk. Shuttle transport is available from the local station (Stowmarket) for those coming by public transport. More details below.
Booking:  Booking essential. Link
Price:  £5, for those requiring shuttle transport to/from station and the different sites that form part of the day. More details below.
Access information:  Please email us on to discuss any access needs (subject line: Access), or call 0207 233 5344

Join our artist-in-residence Åsa Sonjasdotter, and her research collaborators, to learn about, explore and discuss the ideas and legacies of a seminal agricultural experiment in Suffolk.


This one-day gathering offers a speculative revisiting to the soils and the habitats of the 30 year Haughley Experiment, initiated in Haughley, Suffolk, in 1939, by the non-conformist farmers Alice Debenham, Kathleen Carnley and Eve Balfour.

By establishing three different farm-systems; an organic section, a chemical section, and a mixed section, the Haughley Experiment was designed to compare the three methods and their effects over time. The aim was “to investigate the causes of positive health in crops and livestock, and particularly the relationship between the health of the soil and that of the crops and the animals raised upon it” (Balfour 1943).

Organised by Delfina Foundation artist-in-residence Åsa Sonjasdotter and her research collaborators Fatima Alaiwat, Sophie Hughes, and Linnea Johnels, this is an opportunity to come together to visit the original fields of the Haughley Experiment, followed by lunch and an afternoon in the nearby village hall learning about, discussing and responding to our own findings, as well as living memories and archives of the experiment.

Together the group will consider: What knowledge can be yielded about the experiment in the absence of visible marks? What traces can be found in the soils and habitats? What are the legacies of the experiment that can guide us in the present?

Attendee information

Attendees are advised to wear robust shoes, warm, waterproof clothing, and be prepared for possible rainfall. The initial site visit of the original farm will last around 1.5 hours, involving a walking tour (whatever the weather!).

Lunch and afternoon tea and coffee will be provided at the local village hall. Please bring additional snacks and drinks for the journey and time spent on the site visit.

Attendees must be over 18, or accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Booking via Eventbrite essential. If you have any questions about this event please email (subject line: Haughley Experiment)



Attendees joining by public transport are requested to meet at Stowmarket train station at 10.40.

For those traveling from London there is a train leaving from London Liverpool Street at 09:00 and arriving at Stowmarket at 10.34 (change at Ipswich).

Participants are encouraged to book their train tickets in advance for the cheapest fares. [Update: As of 2nd November tickets are available for £19 each way].

Shuttle transport is offered for event attendees who are travelling by train for a cost of £5 per person. This will depart from Stowmarket station at 10:40. The transport will take participants to the various places throughout the day, finally dropping them back at Stowmarket station at 16:20. For those returning to London there is the 16:29 train direct train back or a (likely cheaper) indirect train via Ipswich at 16:47. If you require a seat on the shuttle transport please ensure you book accordingly.


For attendees joining by car, please meet at 11:00 by the barns of New Bells Farm, Haughley Green, Stowmarket (coordinates: 52.236559, 0.978578). After the visit to the site of the the original farm, please drive to reconvene with the group at Haughley Village Hall (1.5 miles).


The project is carried out in collaboration between Åsa Sonjasdotter and Fatima Alaiwat, Sophie Hughes, Linnea Johnels – students of the MA program in Art & Ecology at Goldsmiths, University of London.

This event is made possible thanks to the generous sharing of knowledge by inhabitants of Haughley, the Haughley History Forum, the Suffolk Archives, the farmer Chris Townshend, and the vermiologist Robert Blakemore.

Åsa Sonjasdotter is a resident at Delfina Foundation for the Politics of Food programme. Her residency is supported by Iaspis – The Swedish Grants Committee.

Politics of Food

This event is part of the public programme of Delfina Foundation’s fifth season of the Politics of Food, in partnership with Gaia Art Foundation and with additional support from a range of individuals and partners.