The Lewes arm of charity Jamie’s Farm is now officially open following major restoration work.
The majority of the listed farmhouse near Lewes - which will be used by young, disadvantaged people on residential visits - has been refurbished to make it safe and homely.
The site in Allington Lane, between Offham and East Chiltington,has also homed 118 Lleyn ewes, four pedigree Lleyn rams, as well as goats, chickens and pigs. A herd of pedigree Aberdeen Angus cattle will follow shortly.
The South of England Agricultural Society President, Sir Richard Kleinwort, has chosen Jamie’s Farm as the society’s 2019 charity.
The charity established in 2005, helps disadvantaged young people learn new skills to improve their employment opportunities.
Founder of Jamie’s Farm, Jamie Feilden, commented: “Our first ever group included our Jamie’s Farm Ambassadors, aged 15-19, who stayed at the Lewes farm in February half term.
“It was incredible seeing the farm really come to life. Our Ambassadors provided feedback and added their own ideas and creativity, helping us bring the final details together.”
One Jamie’s Farm Ambassador, Adele, 15, commented: “Once you are at the farm you get stuck in and it’s so overwhelming how much you can do within a week. Being around people with positive energy who empower you to believe that you can do something makes you more confident within yourself. ”
The South of England Agricultural Society’s CEO, Iain Nicol, said: “As part of our support of Jamie’s Farm we will be helping raise awareness of the vital work, support and opportunities the charity offers to children at risk of exclusion from school. With a shared interest in agriculture, and as a charity that has been established in the region for over 50 years, we are keen to get Jamie’s Farm firmly on the map here in the South.”
Jamie’s Farm will be exhibiting at the Society’s annual show Spring Live! over the May Bank Holiday (May 5 and 6).
For more information, or to make a charitable donation to Jamie’s Farm, please visit jamiesfarm.org.uk