FAQs

Booking

How can i contact you?

We check our emails every day. Please send booking or pass enquiries to the following email address. bookings@downatthefarm.co.uk

You can also contact us on Facebook messenger but please note we get a large volume of messages on here and on busy days we might not be able to check messages straight away if we are working on the farm:)

Do I need to book in advance?

2021: Yes please book all your visits online so that we can maintain manageable numbers and provide a better service to our visitors.We cannot guarantee entry without a booking,  If you want to come today its easy to check availability and pay online Please go to “Buy Entry Tickets” and choose your date.

As a season ticket holder do I need to book?

Yes please book all your visits online so that we can maintain manageable numbers and provide a better service to our visitors.We cannot guarantee entry without a booking, Entry for October half term will need to be pre booked.

Do we need to book tickets online?

Please book online for any October half term visit.

Can I bring my dog?

Sorry we cant admit dogs to the farm. This is to make sure our animals don’t react to your dog being near them. We do allow registered assistance dogs for the blind however. If you are bringing a guide dog with you please keep your dog away from the deer and reindeer.

What is included in the price?

Every paying child over 2 yrs old receives a barrel ride and tractor ride voucher. Every paying adult receives a Tractor ride voucher. Under twos don’t need to pay (but wont receive a barrel ride ticket). Tractor rides do not operate during October Half term.

Remember we are all outdoors so please dress for the weather and temperature!

I need to change my date

Tickets are non refundable however we are happy to change the date for you if you email us at bookings@downatthefarm.co.uk at least 48 hrs before the date you originally booked.We can also postpone your tickets if you’re unsure of  the next date you want to come, then just let us know and we can book you back in.

Please note: we cant reschedule tickets if you contact us on the day or if you haven’t attended without letting us know.

Im running late for my time slot!

That’s fine just let us know on FB messenger and we will see you when you get here!

Opening Times

When are you open?

We have always been open every weekend and school holiday between February and end October. Some school holidays can differ so check our opening times before you visit.

Will you open weekdays in term time?

We tried this for the first time in 2020 and we may do this again nearer to the summer holidays if we are ready. Please check Facebook as we always publicise extra opening days on there.

How long can we stay?

You can stay all day from your booked time until we close at 5pm!

Staying Safe

Why do you ask us to wash our hands?

It is essential that customers practise good hand hygiene when visiting the farm – adults and children. Outdoor spaces and animals have bacteria which you may not encounter in day to day life and therefore we ask you to wash your hands with soap and water (not gel) after touching animals and before eating.

We have a very strict disinfection routine here at the farm to keep good hygiene levels and handwashing is an important part of our routine.

We have designed the layout of the farm in a way which minimises the risk to our visitors but please take responsibility for your own children and stop them from eating whilst touching animals and be aware of the potential risks such as not using dummies once dropped on the ground etc.

Is feeding the animals safe?

We sell small bags of animal feed to visitors to feed our sheep, goats and pigs.We restrict the numbers of bags so as not to over feed them so its not always available.

What we would say is please don’t hand feed our animals. Aside from messing up your hands, they have teeth that can inadvertently nip you and your child if they are excited for the food, even cute piglets! Please only shake food onto the floor or into their feed bucket. And always wash your hands afterwards.

Please don’t leave small children unattended around our animals.

Some animals cant be fed because their diet isn’t compatible with the feed or they just don’t like it. Our ponies and donkeys are on strict diet so any treats can be detrimental to their health so please don’t feed them.

Are there any restrictions at the moment?

Summer holidays: This will be kept on our website until we are sure everything is really back to normal. After restrictions end on the 19th we may decide to ask for social distancing in certain areas and in some circumstances our staff may still wear masks to protect themselves.

Hands: we have installed many hand wash sinks and gel stations to keep hands clean around the farm.

Face: Our staff will wear face coverings in any indoor customer facing positions, our cafe is now available to sit inside for customers buying food. Masks are required to go to your table and when ordering ice creams. Outdoors visitors are welcome to wear masks when they feel they need to such as queuing for food etc. After the 19th July masks are not a legal requirement however some of our staff may still wear masks if we feel it is necessary to do so. Visitors are very welcome to continue wearing masks indoor if they wish. 

Space: Here at the farm we have buckets of space. We are all outdoors which keeps the risks low to our visitors. We have assessed areas which need extra measures such as the tractor ride. After the 19th July – please speak to the tractor driver if you have any specific requirements regarding social distancing.

Im pregnant, is it ok to visit?

Our answer to this is yes absolutely! All we ask you to do is be very careful with your hand hygiene and maybe not pet the animals. From a physical point of view please just take extra care around vehicles or animals if they are being moved around. At the time of reopening in April, sheep will not be an issue for you as we will have finished the lambing process.

Do you have first aid?

Yes, please come to the cafe if you require first aid.Our staff have a radio system so can always communicate with us if they need to help a visitor.

Season Tickets

How can I buy one?

Season tickets are available to buy on our website every year between April and July. – once paid you will be given a qr code which we can scan or arrival. Your photos will be shown when we scan your phone.

Can I get a printed card aswell?

We are not printing cards for season tickets going forward. Everything will be on your phone.

I heard you do discounted prices?

Sometimes we run short promotions at specific times of the year however we currently don’t have any scheduled.

What does it include?

Unlimited entry to the farm for the time we are open for the photographed persons on the system.  Every child receives a barrel/tractor ride, every adult receives a tractor ride as part of the ticket.

Animal Questions

Can we we see all the animals on our visit?

The park is designed for you to see all the animals on your visit. Some can be a bit shy like the skunks and raccoons but all other animals can be seen. Our animals have had a very different life in the pandemic and will need time to get used to seeing people over the season, so please give them time to adjust.

The cows can be seen on the tractor ride.

Can we pet the animals

Summer holidays: We are now offering small animal sessions and specified times in our barn. Times of the sessions will always be displayed at the kiosk.

We cant fully guarantee that small animal sessions will be available on your visit because we, like many other businesses are experiencing issues from time to time with staff going into isolation.  However we do intend to put them on every day as much as possible in the summer holidays and hopefully by mid August we hope things will be easier to plan/predict.

Our small animals have not had much contact with visitors for a good 18 months now so we ask all our visitors to be patient with these sessions.

Why are you a zoo?

We have a small collection of non native species,which were all donations or domestic rescues. This requires something called a zoo license. This requires us to be regularly inspected to make sure we are maintaining welfare standards for these animals. As part of the license, the farm is undertaking conservation projects to attract wild birds back to the farm. 25 years ago we planted hundreds of trees with a plan of creating sustainable habitats for future wildlife. We are now seeing the first signs of success with breeding kestrels, owls, hares and rare tree sparrows breeding at the farm every year.

Could you take in my pet rabbit?

Usually we cant accommodate extra animals unless we have space for them. Please email us at bookings@downatthefarm.co.uk if you do have a query.

Other

When is the farmyard opening?

For many years we operated part of the farm over in the old Farmyard. Over lockdown we had a chance to review how we operated and we decided that our animals would be much happier living outside rather than living in indoor pens for visitors to view. We have therefore moved all animals to the other side of the park where they have access to lots of outdoor space.  As a result, our animals are much happier and healthier! We do have a  new small animals barn for visitors who want to see our rabbits and guinea pigs but currently there is nothing over in the old farmyard to see now.

Do you have indoor facilities?

We are an outdoor park with outdoor play areas. We recognise that sometimes visitors need shelter in a shower so we do have a few shelters and a small animals barn as part of the park.  Sorry we don’t have soft play facilities, we are a seasonal outdoor attraction so we are not open in the winter months.

Do you have a cafe?

Yes we do – we have indoor tables for customers buying food (sorry no picnics in the cafe) but we serve hot/cold drinks, ice creams, children’s picnic lunches, sandwiches, soup, burgers, toasties, sandwiches to order, hot dogs, snacks, bacon sandwiches, jacket potatoes. (some things may change seasonally or if we have had a busy day but this is a general guide). Allergies catered for.

Remember to bring a mask to order ice creams or sit in the cafe.

You are welcome to bring a picnic too and sit outside.

Do you do birthday parties?

Summer 2021: Since the pandemic has changed everything we do, we are not anticipating offering birthday parties until we are fully back to normal with a full team of staff.

Do carers have to pay?

Please book your tickets online for the person you are caring for, then bring along your dla paperwork with ID for the person it relates to. Please do this at the kiosk and we will keep a record of your registration for future visits.

Are you wheelchair friendly?

This depends on your own personal circumstances. We have a disabled toilet with ramp, the tractor ride has a ramp (booked in advance of your visit) and most areas are flat however the surface is gravel. Please see our access statement for more detail.

Do you have any jobs available?

We are always looking for enthusiastic people to join our team. Please check if we have any vacancies at bookings@downatthefarm.co.uk.

Do you offer work experience?

We do, but this is specific to students on animal courses at either Houghall or Kirkley Hall. We don’t offer general work experience for school students.