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17 June: Open Farm Sunday

Published: 14th June 2012 10:28
Open Farm Sunday 17 June

Hundreds of farmers across the country, are opening their gates on Open Farm Sunday 17th June, and inviting you to come and discover the story behind our food. This annual event organised by LEAF (Linking Environment And Farming) is a great day out for everyone. It's a fantastic way to find out the work farmers do, not only to produce our food, but also to look after our countryside. To find a farm taking part near you, please visit www.farmsunday.org.

Open Farm Sunday 17 JuneThere is something for the whole family, including big kids - especially dads, which makes Open Farm Sunday an ideal day out for Father's Day and most of the events are free! From amazing machinery and food, to the latest technology and wildlife there is so much to see and do! You can also be a scientist for the day and help out with the first ever National Farm Pollinator Survey*, as we try to find out more about how insects like bees, ladybirds and butterflies help with pollination. For those interested in tractors and technology, many farms will have a display of some of the incredible equipment used in modern farming to maximise productivity whilst caring for the environment. Some farms will also have vintage equipment on display, providing you with a great opportunity to see how farming has advanced over the years. Or simply enjoy an informative farm tour with a farmer, and discover first hand more about the work they do every day, so that we all have food to eat and countryside to enjoy. Each Open Farm Sunday event is unique and could include exciting things to see ranging from milking robots, sheep shearing to farm animals or local wildlife. Events may also offer activities to enjoy like tractor trailer rides, food tastings or picking your own fruit.

Open Farm Sunday 17 JuneFor Open Farm Sunday 2012, we are inviting the public to help with the first ever National Farm Pollinator Survey. Insect pollinators like bees, flies and butterflies are very important to farmers, as without these important insects the availability of some key crops such as soft fruits, oilseed rape and tomatoes could be affected. Insects like these are also vital for the countryside and their value to the UK economy has been valued at approximately £400m.

This survey will help us learn more about these important insects, so farmers can protect and conserve pollinating insects on their farms. Many farms will also be offering the Discover Pollinator activity to help everyone learn more about pollination and the insects involved. So you can start to recognise these insects which are vital to our food and our countryside.

*The Pollinator survey will be available on selected farms, if you are interested in finding the farm nearest to you taking part in The Pollinator Survey, please see www.farmsunday.org.

The majority of events take place on Sunday 17 June 2012 but this year some farms will be open on alternative dates - details of which farms are opening when are available on www.farmsunday.org

To find a farm to visit near you, visit http://www.farmsunday.org/ .

For up-to-date campaign information, like us on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/LEAFopenfarmsunday , or follow us on Twitter - www.twitter.com/openfarmsunday.

Here are some of the more local farms that are open on Sunday:




Solitaire Farm

SG19 3NY

East of England

Click here for details:  Solitaire Farm, Drove Road, Gamlingay, Sandy
Email: balshampigs@btinternet.com
Telephone: 01767 650884
Day of event: Sun 17th June

Blacklands Farm

MK44 2PP

East of England

Click here for details:  Kimbolton Road, Wilden
Email: morganpell@btinternet.com
Telephone: 01234 771587
Website: http://www.morganpellmeats.co.uk/
Day of event: Sun 17th June

Scald End Farm

MK44 2DP

East of England

Click here for details:  Mill Road, Thurleigh, Bedford
Email: hazel@scaldendfarm.com
Telephone: 01234 772688
Website: http://www.scaldendfarm.com/
Day of event: Sun 17th June

Bottom Farm


East Midlands

Click here for details:  Hargrave, Wellingborough
Email: duncan@farrington-oils.co.uk
Telephone: 01933 622809
Website: http://www.farrington-oils.co.uk/
Day of event: Sun 17th June 

Manor Farm

CB23 1EY

East of England

Click here for details:  Harlton, Cambridge
Email: paula.banks@rocketmail.com
Telephone: 01223 264675
Day of event: Sun 17th June

Burwash Manor

CB23 7EY

East of England

Click here for details:  New Road, Barton
Email: info@burwashmanor.com
Day of event: 

Newlands Farm

NN29 7LB

East Midlands

Click here for details:  Harrold Road, Bozeat, Wellingborough, Northampton
Email: claire.james3@tesco.net
Telephone: 07946 176448
Day of event: Sun 17th June

The College of West Anglia

CB24 6DB

East of England

Click here for details:  Landbeach Road, Milton, Cambridge
Email: lfrost@col-westanglia.ac.uk
Telephone: 01223 860701
Website: http://www.cwa.ac.uk/
Day of event: Sun 17th June

College Farm

CB22 4QF

East of England

Click here for details:  Grange Road, Duxford
Email: liz@russellsmithfarms.co.uk
Telephone: 01223 839002
Website: http://www.russellsmithfarms.co.uk/
Day of event:

Sacrewell Farm & Country Centre


East of England

Click here for details:  Sacrewell Farm & Country Centre, Thornhaugh, Peterborough
Email: laura.fanthorpe@sacrewell.org.uk
Telephone: 01780 782254
Website: http://www.sacrewell.org.uk/
Day of event: Sun 17th June     
Free entry, but we do charge for certain activities

MHS Farms Ltd (Open Saturday 16th and Sunday 17th June 2012 Only)


East of England

Click here for details:  7 Park Farm, Sand Pit Road, Thorney, Peterborough
Email: ofvw@parkfarmthorney.co.uk
Telephone: 01733 270298
Website: http://www.parkfarmthorney.co.uk/
Day of event: Sun 17th June

Pigeons Farm


East of England

Click here for details:  Wisbech Road, Thorney, Peterborough
Email: info@pigeonsfarm.co.uk
Telephone: 01733 271020
Website: http://www.pigeonsfarm.co.uk/
Day of event: Sun 17th June


Case Study

Farm: Russell Smith Farms, Duxford

Contact: Andrew Nottage

Robert Smith and I are not only farmers but custodians of the Cambridgeshire countryside. The Smith family have been farming the land located around the imperial War Museum since 1938 and grow potatoes, cereals and onions amongst other things. We are both also members of LEAF (Linking Environment And Farming), a charity which promotes environmentally responsible farming, and the organisation behind Open Farm Sunday which is held on the 17th June and allows members of the public to find out more about where their food comes from.

As LEAF farmers, we are committed to producing good food with care for the environment. Protecting and conserving the wildlife on the farm is achieved through a number of Integrated Farm Management techniques. For example, we only trim the hedges every two to three years and margins are left around fields so the wildlife can flourish. These areas are planted with wildflower mixtures to attract insects and butterflies. After harvesting some of the crops, certain fields are left over the winter to provide a winter food source for wild birds.

Up until the mid 1980s cereals were the main crop grown. We then began to expand the potato crop after discovering the land is particularly well suited to them. Our farm also specialises in the production of premium quality vegetables, including onions for a range of customers.

Much of the food grown on our farm is sold to supermarkets, including Marks and Spencer and Asda. Russell Smith Farms are LEAF Marque certified, which can be recognised through the LEAF Marque logo on packaging and displays in certain retailers. The LEAF Marque is a logo that shows the food you are buying has been produced to high environmental standards from farmers you can trust.

For a great day out and to find out more about how your food is produced and the countryside around you is cared for, visit Russell Smith Farms on the 17th June for Open Farm Sunday.

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