Creatures great - and in school
Lancing College

School farms are a great way for children to learn about farming and animal husbandry as well as offering the perfect place to de-stress and unwind outside the classroom. We visit Lancing College school farm and meet some of their furry and feathered residents

How long have you had a school farm?

The farm at Lancing College was established in 1983 (33 years ago) as an off-shoot of the Science Department. It ran then, pretty much as it does today, as an extra-curricular activity for our pupils, rooted in conservation and open to all-comers. The most significant difference in recent years is its integration with the academic side of life at the College, providing opportunities to take subjects such as Biology, Geography and Business Studies out of the classroom, offering a cross-curricular educational experience.

What animals do you have?

Our main stock are pigs and sheep - producing rare breed pork and lamb from a flock of over a hundred South and Hampshire Downs, Jacob, Suffolk and Shetland sheep. This is supplied to the school kitchens and is also marketed locally and within the school community. We also have poultry, including geese and turkeys, and donkeys, alpacas, goats and a small animal unit with rabbits and ferrets.

What benefit does it bring to pupils?

The farm is an ideal place for those wanting to study veterinary science or zoology at university. It also gives pupils the opportunity to participate in something completely different, away from the school curriculum. The College hosts visits from other schools, takes part in Open Farm Sunday and offers work placements to agricultural colleges.

Which animal do the children like the most?

Our pigs are always very popular, especially the breeding sows.

Lancing College, Lancing, West Sussex BN15 0RW. 01273 452213.