Katelynn Blackburn aged 6 (1)

Visitors to Reaseheath College in Nantwich enjoyed an early taste of Spring at a lambing event despite the wintry weather.

Although Storm Jorge forced the cancellation of Saturday’s Lambing and Zoo event, the Nantwich college was able to open its new lambing sheds to the public as planned on Sunday.

More than 500 families flocked through the gates to meet the newborns, visited the college’s mini zoo and enjoyed eating local produce and browsing market stalls.

The popular event, a major draw to Nantwich for the past 24 years, will be repeated next weekend, March 7 and 8 (10am – 4pm).

This year it offers an improved experience as the sheep flock is now housed in more spacious facilities on the college’s main campus and there is a greater range of food outlets.

Regular lambing visitor Amy Blackburn from Crewe, who was meeting the lambs with six year-old daughter Katelynn (pictured, above), said: “We come each year because it’s such a nice event for the younger age group and gives them the opportunity to do something special like holding a lamb.

“This year the set-up is better because it’s more spacious and you have a great view.”

Jenny Savage, from Frodsham, returning for the fourth year with daughter Emma, aged seven, said: “We always keep a look out for this event because Emma loves cuddling the lambs.

“The new layout makes it easy to get around and is more convenient for the zoo.

“We’ve also liked the wider choice of catering stalls.”

Poppie Hendrie-Hall 3 yrs (1)

Poppie Hendrie-Hall

Rachael Hendrie, from Nantwich, who was visiting with three year-old Poppie Hendrie-Hall and two other family members, said: “Today has been brilliant for all the family.

“There’s so much to do and being able to see and touch animals introduces another dynamic.”

Kate Metcalfe, from Wilmslow, a first time visitor with Owen, seven, and Henry, 10, added: “This has been a really lovely event.

“Our trip round the zoo has particularly exceeded my expectations, it’s in such a beautiful setting and has a really interesting range of animals.”

Reaseheath has a commercial flock of more than 300 expectant ewes which are due to produce more than 600 lambs around the time of the lambing events.

The college’s mini zoo houses more than 1,000 animals including meerkats, lemurs, a tapir, otters, birds of prey, companion animals such as rabbits and guinea pigs, reptiles, amphibians and fish.

Experienced agricultural staff and zoo keepers are present throughout to demonstrate how they care for their animals and to answer questions.

Event organiser Stephanie Owen said: “We hope our visitors enjoyed their lambing and zoo experience and we’re looking forward to welcoming more families onto campus next weekend.”

Entry for traffic is at Entrance 1 off B5074 Worleston Road and car parking is free.

Find out more at www.reaseheath.ac.uk/lambing

(All images courtesy of Tim Jervis Professional Photography)

Zach Nichols 2 and Matthew Nichols - lambing

Winnie Rhind 4 yrs

Winnie Rhind

Tim Bishop, Clare Platt, Charlie Bishop 18 months (1)

Tim Bishop, Clare Platt, Charlie Bishop 18 months

Sarina Byrne 11 yrs

Sarina Byrne 11 yrs

Owen and Henry Metcalfe, Emma Savage, Kira Grimshaw with Hilda barn owl (1)

Owen and Henry Metcalfe, Emma Savage, Kira Grimshaw with Hilda barn owl

Katie Swan, Grace Burke, Ella Otway 14 yrs Wirral (1)

Katie Swan, Grace Burke, Ella Otway

Isabella Yates 13 yrs 1 (1)

Isabella Yates

Bella-Rose Davenport, 5 yrs, Emmy African spurred tortoise (1)

Bella-Rose Davenport, 5 yrs, Emmy African spurred tortoise

Anthony Baggaley, Dayve Dean Director The Cat (1)

Anthony Baggaley, Dayve Dean, Director The Cat

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