Thousands enjoyed visiting farms on 9 June

Linking the Environment & Farming (LEAF) has announced record numbers at its nationwide Open Farm Sunday event on 9 June.

Feedback from farms indicates that, in many cases, visitor numbers were up by between 10 and 20 per cent on last year, with LEAF estimating that more than 200,000 people visited the 365 farms that opened.

The increase in visitor numbers was seen across the country and conversations on social media sites, such as Facebook and Twitter, had already reached new levels before the weekend.

Agriculture minister David Heath praised the event as a “fabulous opportunity” for the public to show their appreciation for British farmers and growers. He said: “It’s important for people to understand more about how vital sustainable farming is, and how our farmers play a key role in caring for the countryside. I’d like to congratulate all those involved for making the event so successful.”

A pilot Open Schools event, which started last week and is continuing until 14th June, is also proving popular with teachers and students allowing them access to real working farms.