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Trailer Launch Boosts School Visits

by 5m Editor
23 April 2010, at 9:43am

UK - A purpose-built visitor trailer is set to boost school visits to FAI Farms at Wytham, Oxfordshire.

With the ability to get up close to the farm's cattle, sheep, pigs and chickens, the county's primary and secondary schools are taking the opportunity to integrate their classroom activity with FAI's work on sustainable food production. A wheelchair lift ensures that all children can benefit equally from these visits.

Thirty pupils from the local Wolvercote Primary School were the first passengers on a farm tour, accompanied by Professor Ian Walmsley, Pro-Vice-Chancellor of Oxford University, and Lucy Neville-Rolfe, Trustee of the Tesco Charity Trust which financed the trailer.

"The new trailer means we can now improve visitor access to the farm and further integrate the work we do with the national curriculum," said Mike Gooding, FAI managing director.

FAI farms 1,250 acres just west of Oxford as a tenant of the University. It also undertakes projects to develop sustainable food production for the future. The school visit programme is run by the Outdoor Classroom, a new initiative that brings together FAI, the Oxford-based charity FACT (The Farm Animal Care Trust) and The University of Oxford.

Professor Walmsley said: "Our outreach programme is designed to raise the aspirations of young people and the new Outdoor Classroom at FAI provides a wonderful resource for local schools and the community."

The Friends of FAI, under the umbrella of FACT, is supporting the initiative with the aim of raising enough funds to employ an Education Officer who will co-ordinate all the activities and work with teachers to ensure that pupils get the most from their time on the farm.

There is wide recognition that much of the national curriculum can be covered through project work on the farm and it is an ideal opportunity for children to get outside and learn more about what goes into creating the food we eat.