YOUNG carers from Boscombe learnt how to catch a chicken on a fun day out at Longdown Activity Farm in Ashhurst.

Twelve carers from Bethany School in Boscombe visited the farm and learnt how to catch and hold a chicken safely, thanks to farmer Bryan Pass.

Bournemouth Echo: Young carers from Bethany School visited Longdown Activity FarmYoung carers from Bethany School visited Longdown Activity Farm

This day out was organised by the Wessex branch of Variety The Children’s Charity and was the first Variety Wessex outing since lockdown restrictions began in March 2020.

Pastoral lead at Bethany School, Liz Rawson-Jones said: "I just want to say an enormous thank you to Variety for an incredible day out at Longdown Farm.

"The children were so excited to finally be allowed out of school after such a long time. For many of the children they had never been to a farm before, so for them to be able to hold the animals and to feed them was amazing to watch.

"Farmer Bryan was great at including each of the children as his assistant. They took their role as the 'farmer' very seriously. Even the shyest of them relished the chance to give instructions to the rest of the group."

The youngsters enjoyed spending time with the hens, collecting eggs and carrying them to be boxed ready for sale at the farm’s shop.

Bournemouth Echo: A young carer enjoying time with the chickensA young carer enjoying time with the chickens

The children also fed young goats, learned how to bottle-feed kids and climbed onto a trailer for a bumpy ride round the farm.

Liz Rawson-Jones said: "The bouncy tractor ride was a very noisy and exciting part of their day and I have a feeling they would still be going around the field if they were allowed.

"For one special little boy, what a way to spend his birthday. A day on the farm celebrating with his friends.

"After being in lockdown, with all the restrictions, it felt so good to take the children out for the day. Let's keep our fingers crossed that this was the first of all the ones that we have missed and it's not another 18 months before we can take the children out again."

Chair of Variety Wessex, Frances Cornelius said: "Thank you to Farmer Bryan and everyone at Longdown Farm for a wonderful and exciting day out. The children loved it all. Thank you also my committee members Judy Hiscoke and Avril Owton for helping on the day – your support is invaluable."