People of all ages and their pets gathered on Holme Farm near Stansted on Sunday to celebrate and thank God for our pets and for the countryside.
It was to celebrate Open Farm Sunday, which is an annual event when farmers throw open their gates and welcome people of all ages in to give them an insight into what being a farmer is like – and to celebrate the hard work they do all year round in producing our food and managing the countryside.
It was the hottest day of the year so far, so idyllic weather to be out in the open on the farm.
We took the time and space to listen to the birds, soak up the scenery and really get in touch with the land that feeds us.
But we also reminded ourselves of the hard work and the risks that all farmers have to contend with – and not just the weather or poor prices!
One of the issues that farmers such as Mike and Lizzy face is the local ravens – a raven is pictured below – taking goose eggs and goslings. Although not good from a farm production and profit perspective, they and other farmers are well aware of the needs for conservation and that ravens are a protected species – but they do sometimes wish that they could look for food elsewhere.
Mike talked about how they accommodate food production with conservation and also explained to us how they were modernising the farm and diversifying the use of some their farm buildings for use by other compatible businesses.
We then had a special service to celebrate and thank God for the gift of all creation and for those who grow and harvest the food that we eat every day for our breakfast, dinner and tea and for the unlimited love and trust that our pets give us.
And then we shared strawberries and cream together and enjoyed chatting together.
What better way to spend a bright and sunny Sunday afternoon?