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Countryfile comes to Cumbria

BBC Countryfile visits Low Beckside Farm

BBC Countryfile’s Charlotte Smith talks to Dr Victoria Edwards 
about the Trust’s decision to buy Low Beckside Farm

Hector Meanwell with students from Kendal College at Low Beckside Farm with BBC Countryfile’s Charlotte Smith

After a summer spent negotiating the purchase of Low Beckside Farm in Cumbria, it was good to welcome BBC Countryfile’s Charlotte Smith to see the farm in action.

The Trust’s intention to continue running the farm as an educational facility is already being realised, as it plays host to students from Kendal College, seen here in the BBC’s footage.

Local farmer, Hector Meanwell, has a contracting role at Low Beckside which will support the Trust in helping students to learn valuable skills on this fully operational upland farm.

It’s a good place for students to learn

says Hector, who was a former student of Newton Rigg, the college that used the farm as part of its campus, before finally closing in July.

His example is one the Trust hopes to encourage in visiting students, as it reviews the farm’s potential as the only remaining land-based learning centre in Cumbria.

The Trust’s Chief Executive Dr Victoria Edwards OBE tells Countryfile’s Charlotte Smith,

There’s a demographic in farming where we are going to lose a lot of farmers fairly soon through natural retirement, and it needs a feed of young people coming through.

The Ernest Cook Trust is delighted to see Low Beckside Farm already hosting students from local colleges, and is currently looking at what types of training and education the farm can offer young people in the future.