We found this little gem in between Christmas and New Year when we decided to make the most of the respite from the rain and have a wander around the local area where we now live.
We didn't actually visit the Farm itself that day but went to the attached pub which is small but very family friendly and offers a range of local ciders and beers, wines, spirits, soft drinks and food. Whilst there may not be a great deal of room inside, there is a large beer garden and on this particular day there was a marquee set up with benches, although I am not sure if this was in preparation for New Years Eve.As we were sat in the warmth of the fire, watching H play with a couple of other children and a chat to a dog, we decided that we would soon return to bring him around the farm properly.
We managed a proper trip to the City Farm on the first weekend of January.
The first thing I have to say about it is it is FREE! It costs absolutely nothing to go. Of course they do ask you to leave a donation of whatever you feel suitable or can afford but this is requested in a discreet way by placing a box at the entrance/exit of the animal section. As well as there being the pub attached (I couldn't tell you about the pricing structure as my husband went to the bar when we went there) there is also a cafe based by the Adventure Playground, although this was shut.
First up were the pigs. With Peppa Pig being H's favourite show, alongside Thomas and
the Tank Engine Friends and Countdown (he is currently obsessed with letters and numbers), I am quite convinced H could have spent all day watching the pigs and laughing at them! Each time one approached him, snorting deeply, H went into fits of giggles.
Next up were the goats, which H didn't seem to be too fussed about to be honest. D and I had a little debate though about whether these chaps in the middle picture are goats or not. The sign above the barn said they were but I didn't get to note the breed and there were a few incorrect signs around the site!
Next we passed the chickens and ducks, which H kept running back to, doing the chicken actions! I am not sure where he has picked up this skill and I haven't yet managed to snap a shot of him doing it but I hope to soon!
Unfortunately overnight on New Years Eve there had been a break in and all of the rabbits had been stolen plus a few pens had been damaged. This saddens me deeply as St Werburg's is very obviously a community project, run by the community, for the community.
It was a really busy afternoon there and as we went on such a whim, we didn't end up going until mid afternoon so we did feel we had to rush it in order to get home before it started getting dark. Whilst it is within walking distance for us, you never know how long a short walk is actually going to take a 2.5 year old.
We managed a quick stop at the adventure playground, which was also very busy, mostly with children running up the slide which is a bug bear of mine.
After a little browse online on our return home, I discovered they run several events and also a weekly pre-school play and stay, based outdoors seemingly with the aim of teaching the children about animals, plants and gardening in their most basic forms. There seems to be plenty of ways to join in and contribute and to me it sounds like a worthwhile cause, just in that one visit it really did strike me as a place for the community, run by the community. I already have a feeling this is going to become a top choice for places to spend a few hours!