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There is never a quiet time when you work in farming but the last few weeks have been particularly busy for us all at LEAF (Linking Environment And Farming).  We’ve been in touch with the hundreds of farmers who participated in Open Farm Sunday to follow up on their experiences.Numbers are still coming in but we estimate around 205,000 people visited a farm on Open Farm Sunday – exceeding the record breaking attendance of 2013. For me, this is the rewarding bit –after months of planning and preparation it’s great to hear about the impact Open Farm Sunday has had on farmers, their families and helpers, as well as the many thousands of people who visited a farm across the UK. LEAF was set up to deliver more sustainable food and farming and a key part of that is engaging the public. That is why we set up the first Open Farm Sunday in 2006 and why we continue to manage this important initiative which has grown to become farming’s national open day.

This year has truly been a celebration of British farming and food! It’s fantastic that people have once again come out in their thousands to show their support for farmers. It was great to see so many families enjoying a day out in the countryside and learning about farming and food production. To see the faces of children and their parents light up when they hold a chick, see the size of a cow, climb onto a tractor and walk through fields, is so rewarding.

At LEAF, we’d like to say a huge thank you to the 6,000 farmers and their helpers who took part this year to make this the best Open Farm Sunday yet. And we’d also like to thank all our sponsors including Marks and Spencer for making this event possible and provided resources for farmers, in-store promotions and on-farm support. It has been a pleasure working with Andy and the group of M&S producers this year. If you couldn’t make it out to farm– here’s ashort video of what went on at Robert Hignes’ farm in Kent. Next year will be the 10th anniversary of Open Farm Sunday so put the 7th June 2015 in your diary now so we can make the celebrations even bigger!

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