Local visitor attraction thriving as lockdown eases

The owner of a local visitor attraction believes businesses have every reason to be confident looking ahead after a positive first week back.

Sharnfold Farm, situated on the Hailsham Road at Stone Cross, between Eastbourne and Hailsham, is now fully open after some Covid restrictions were relaxed from April 12.

And owner Donna Bull, from St Leonards, is predicting a busy spring and summer for the local economy.

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She said: “During lockdown we were classed as essential retail so we were able to keep the shop open.

Sharnfold Farm playground SUS-210420-100713001

“Now we have been able to open the rest of what we have on offer here, and the early response has been very positive indeed.

“It’s been a busy Easter school holiday and of course the kind weather helped too. I think everyone just wanted to come out after all these months.”

New lambs have been one of the attractions since reopening, and Donna says it’s a really exciting time.

She said: “We have a new farmer, market gardener, and also a new main grower.

Sharnfold Farm lambs SUS-210420-100703001

“All the PYO raspberries and strawberries plants have been planted ready for June time, and we are growing more of our own vegetables.

“We are trying to make the site as attractive as ever, and we are delighted with customer feedback.”

Last year there was a complete makeover of the coffee shop, with an outside area, and the floor is five times the size it was.

Now Donna wants to expand the menu as well. She also plans to enhance the popular farm trail with a mini village in the woods.

She said: “We have new lines in our fruit and veg offering, and we source everything local. It’s so nice here. We have our high-quality farm shop and butchers, the cafe area both inside and out, the lambs, the farm trail and also the wide-open area where families can come and enjoy the play area with the various attractions on it.

“We are continually looking to improve what we offer, and as restrictions ease, I think it could be an exciting summer for both businesses and customers.”

Sharnfold Farm is open seven days a week. Go to sharnfoldfarm.co.uk.