Family fun down on the farm on Sunday

Open Farm Sunday event at Ewerby Thorpe. Sam Smith 7 and Elena Smith 5 looking at different grains. EMN-160606-152226001
Open Farm Sunday event at Ewerby Thorpe. Sam Smith 7 and Elena Smith 5 looking at different grains. EMN-160606-152226001

Record numbers are believed to have attended this year’s Open Farm Sunday in the Sleaford area.

This year, the free-to-enter event was held at the farm of current Sleaford NFU (National Farmers Union) chairman William Howe, of Ewerby Thorpe Farm.

Open Farm Sunday event at Ewerby Thorpe. Oliver Odam 4 and mum Kayleigh Odam of Sleaford on a tractor. EMN-160606-152311001

Open Farm Sunday event at Ewerby Thorpe. Oliver Odam 4 and mum Kayleigh Odam of Sleaford on a tractor. EMN-160606-152311001

The 365-acre arable farm grows wheat, oilseed rape, barley and beans and is also home to school meals provider The Farm Kitchen.

William’s wife Victoria is a director of the business and said she reckoned there were between 700 and 800 visitors on the day.

She said: “The weather was amazing, which really helped and we had some lovely feedback.”

The day is part of a national event by Linking Environment And Farming when hundreds of farms across the country open their gates for visitors to learn more about the work that is done to put food on the table and look after the countryside.

Open Farm Sunday event at Ewerby Thorpe.Jamie Paterson and Katie Barkey with Max Paterson 6 and William Paterson 3 of Sleaford. EMN-160606-152257001

Open Farm Sunday event at Ewerby Thorpe.Jamie Paterson and Katie Barkey with Max Paterson 6 and William Paterson 3 of Sleaford. EMN-160606-152257001

There were tractor and trailer rides from the car park at nearby Howell Farm, giving guided tours explaining what crops are growing and what work is being done on the farms at the moment.

There was a ‘field in a square metre’ demonstration, showing what goes into the land – how much seed, the tiny amount of pesticide spray, and the amount of grain expected to be grown.

Mrs Howe said: “People could see some of the equipment on the farm and a local gamekeeper did picking-up demonstrations with his gun dogs.”

There were displays of old and modern farm machinery to give a comparison as well as a display by Heckington Windmill volunteers.

Open Farm Sunday event at Ewerby Thorpe. Aiden Hughes-Ringham 3 potting a tomato plant with Helen White of The Farm Kitchen. EMN-160606-152238001

Open Farm Sunday event at Ewerby Thorpe. Aiden Hughes-Ringham 3 potting a tomato plant with Helen White of The Farm Kitchen. EMN-160606-152238001

The Farm Kitchen had a stand whipping up mint and yogurt dip and green smoothies. There were tomato plants and pumpkin seeds to take away and lots of hands-on experiences with buckets of the various grains used by the farmers, and livestock displays.

While entry was free, a collection was held for the Lincs and Notts Air Ambulance.