Arrange a Visit

PLEASE NOTE:
THE EDUCATION OFFICER IS LEAVING IN JULY SO EDUCATIONAL GROUP VISITS FROM AUTUMN TERM 2017  ARE UNAVAILABLE UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE.

We do not offer farm tours to individuals or individual families and the Education Centre is always closed at weekends.

 

 

An educational group visit to Jody Scheckter’s 2,500 acre organic farm is enjoyable, thought-provoking and free of charge!

The Laverstoke Park Education Centre (LPEC) was set up by Clare Scheckter in 2003 with support from Hampshire County Council. Since then, we have welcomed more than 20,000 visitors from nursery, primary, secondary and SEN schools, colleges of further education and organisations such as farming groups, caterers, WI, U3A and Scouts. Many large and small groups visit us on a regular basis.

Our fully qualified Education Officer delivers free farm tours, talks and hands-on activities to groups of all ages, abilities and interests. Students can learn first-hand about farm-related issues such as sustainable land management, biodiversity, farm animal welfare and healthy food production from field to fork.

We can support the school curriculum at all Key Stages, particularly science, geography, environmental studies, PSHE and catering. Each visit is tailored to meet the specific objectives of the group or the lead teacher.

Options include investigating the principles of organic farming, touring the farm past our fields of sheep and buffalo, viewing our buffalo milking parlour when empty or operational (milking times are 5:00-7:30am and 2:30-5:00pm), bottle-feeding our buffalo calves, planting salads in pots, appreciating our compost facility and vineyard and/or exploring our Victorian walled garden, poly-tunnels and orchards. In the summer term, a suitable stretch of the River Test can be accessed, by prior arrangement, for your own investigations. From April to June, our hand-reared lambs can be petted.

Where relevant to their studies, small groups of older students may visit our licensed soil laboratories, view our mozzarella production through the window and/or visit the viewing gallery of our on-site abattoir (N.B. The abattoir is no longer operational but the slaughter process can still be explained).

Groups may plan a broad farm experience or focus on project-specific topics such as ‘new life’,  ‘mozzarella production’, ‘sustainability’ or ‘healthy eating’.

You may choose to have a PowerPoint presentation in the classroom, adapted to your requirements, such as a simple look at why farmers keep animals and grow crops (KS1/2), a farm overview that includes slides about selective breeding (KS4/5), slides about organic soil management (farmers/gardeners) etc. etc.

Visits must usually be arranged between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday, preferably during term time. Most primary schools are with us from 10am to 2pm. We can host groups of all sizes from 7 to 70.

Your own transport is required all day for touring the farm. All visit destinations are accessible by minibuses and most are accessible by one or two single-decker coaches (no longer than 13m) or a convoy of up to 8 cars.

Outdoor clothing, wellies or outdoor shoes and your own First Aid arrangements are advised. Picnic lunches may be eaten in the classroom or outside on the picnic benches, weather permitting. Mozzarella samples may be pre-ordered at least one week in advance (minimum of 6 x 125g balls for £9).

Alternatively, larger primary school parties may be able to book a place on our summer Estate Day, which is usually held in late June or early July and involves a set programme of outdoor activities for up to 180 pupils.

First time group leaders must attend a pre-visit consultation to tour the farm, sign our comprehensive risk assessment and plan a suitable schedule with us. Please note that our on-site farm shop has closed and we do not offer any items for sale.

Contact: Mrs Laura Romney BSc PGCE

Email: [email protected]

Telephone: 01256 772 805

Voluntary donations to our charity ‘The Laverstoke Foundation’ (reg. no. 1098108) are most welcome and help to meet our running costs.