HELP!! The Divide Between Countryside and Townie To Be Driven Wider!
Professor Hugh Pennington is advocating that under 5's should not come into contact with animals at petting farms amid fears of contracting E.Coli. according to BBC News.
Professor Pennington's comments came as news that a fourth petting farm has been forced to close. World of Country Life, in Exmouth, voluntarily closed its petting areas and deer train ride following infections in three children who visited the farm last month - although the farm has not been confirmed as the source.
These petting farms are a huge source of enjoyment to mainly the under 5's where they can learn about farms, animals and the countryside. Just to see the excitement on my childrens faces when we visit some of these places means that they are paying attention and absorbing information given to them.
They are a vital tool in connecting the countryside to townies. The industry ( LEAF, NFU, Countryside Alliance, Et Al) needs to get together to draw awareness of the issue's with petting farms. They need to produce a code of conduct that these farms can put in place to reassure the public and be very specific about the risks, educate the visitors to the importance of hygiene.
We MUST NOT let these type off attractions close down for good. They are a vital tool to link Town to Country, Farm to Food.