Have you updated your Risk Assessment in line with Government Guidelines during the current pandemic?
Yes our teams undertake Lateral Flow Tests on Sunday & Wednesday evenings. We also have update and trained all our staff in the required precautions and additional measures required to be able to conduct animal visits in line with Government guidelines. A copy of our current risk assessment can be downloaded here: Download
Are you licensed and regulated under the new Performing Animals Act?
Yes, our licence is issued by Bedford Borough Council ref. LIC/2/22/01.
From October 2018 all organisations or individuals that keep or train animals for exhibition including educational activities by law must be licensed to carry out those activities.
The license must be displayed on the organisation's website and displayed on visits. The 6 month grace period ended on March 31st 2019 and all companies & individuals must be compliant from April 1st 2019.
We've never had a farm visit before and we're interested in how it could work for us?
Whilst every visit is unique to the school or site we go to, creating a mobile farm is a simple, hassle free & cost effective alternative to an off site farm visit. Let us send you our 'How it works' pack - Sign up here and we'll send it straight to you for you to print out and pass around
Which farm animals will you bring?
Whilst each visit can be tailored to your individual school needs, typically we will look to bring 8 species of animals (about 16 animals) ranging from pigs or piglets, sheep or lambs, ducks, geese, hens, a cockerel, a Shetland pony/cow or donkey, a pygmy goat & and our friendly labrador. Whenever possible we will always bring young animals.
When can you visit?
We have a minimum booking time of two hours, but you can choose when we start and when we finish. North London visits will normally start at 9.30 on weekdays
How much will it cost?
We offer a variety of options to try and best meet your needs.
Please see our prices page for the latest costs.
Please contact us to discuss your specific needs.
What do we need to provide?
See our agreement details for a list of our requirements. We try as much as possible to bring everything we need thereby making the whole experience as easy to organise as possible for you.
How much space do you require to set up in?
We can set up in most spaces, from fields to indoors.
Most importantly we will require space to park our vehicle plus livestock trailer and access to walk equipment and animals to your location.
Click here to see a diagram of a typical set-up.
Do you have any experience of educational environments and needs?
Tam has worked as a teaching assistant for over 8 years in a large primary school and graduated with a BA Honours degree in Educational Practice in 2007. Marcia is a qualified teacher with over 40 years experience teaching primary school children. Danielle has recently completed her Level 3 Diploma in Animal Management and has now also achieved CEVAS certification with regards to teaching children about food, farming and the countryside.
Do you have Public Liability Insurance?
Yes. We have Public Liability Insurance for £5 million and once a booking is confirmed we supply you with a copy of the certificate for your records.
Have you done Risk Assessments?
Yes: you can download our Risk Assessments here. Most Risk Assessment is common sense and we would assume most people use common sense when viewing the animals. We do give a full safety briefing to children when on school/nursery visits before the children come into contact with the animals.
Should I be worried about e-coli?
We take the health and safety of you, our animals and ourselves very seriously at all times. We have a strict H&S policy which all staff are familiar with. With regards to the specific risks presented by e-Coli we ensure that we are aware and follow the latest advice contained within the Industry Code of Practice. To download their guidance notes with the specific supplement for teachers please click here.
How many Ark Farm staff accompany each visit?
Two adults will always attend each full farm visit and there will be 1 or 2 adults for Small Animal Visits. All staff are fully briefed before coming on visits and are debriefed afterwards. All attending adults will have DBS checks available for inspection if required. However, no staff member should be left unaccompanied with children as the children are always the responsibility of the school, nursery staff, parents etc depending on the booking.
What age group is your farm visit for?
We have found that farm visits are a valuable and enjoyable experience for all ages, cultures and abilities. The educational visits can be structured around specific subjects and ages whilst the social visits are great for simply bringing young children and farm animals together in a safe and friendly environment. For information on how our farm visits work alongside the key National Curriculum units, click here
How far will you travel?
Whilst we try to work as locally as possible, within a 100 mile radius of Bedford, we can accomodate visits to North London, East Birmingham, Cambridge, Wycombe, Peterborough, Spalding etc. Click here for a map of the area we cover.
What happens if it rains?
We will bring pop up large gazebos and should the weather turn inclement, these can be erected very quickly.