“ Address: Wyrefield Farm / Rossall Lane / Fleetwood FY7 8JP / Lancashire / Tel: 01253 874389 „
During the long school summer holidays I was given a family ticket to gain free entry to a place called Farmer Parrs Animal World, a place which I had never heard of at all. But, after a quick search online I soon realised that it was not the name of the latest Pixar movie, it is in fact a place where you can go to mingle with the animals usually seen on a farm, maybe gaining a little education as you go.
WHERE IS IT THEN..?
It is situated in Fleetwood, along the B5268, which is near the better known thriving tourist spot called Blackpool. The exact location for the farm is....
Farmer Parrs Animal World
If you put the postcode into your Sat Nav it may send you down a road called Sandy Lane, (it did for me). Luckily, before turning down this road, there is a sign for the Animal World directly in front of you which points to you in the right direction, sending you down the road leading to the car park of Farmer Parrs Animal World.
It is open 7 days a week, 10am - 5pm each day, with the last admission time being at 4:30pm.
** ENTRANCE COST...( to date)
Children/senior citizens/concessions... £5.00
Family ticket... £18.00
Children under 2... Free
** There are also timed events, mainly in the summer months, such as...
Meet the animals... 11:30
Tractor rides... 11:50, 1:00, 2:50 and 4:00, (an announcement is made before the times of each ride)
Animal show... 1:30
Pony rides... begin at 2:00.
Additional cost do occur for certain events, such as the tractor rides are £1.00 each and the pony rides are £2.00 each.
** WHAT'S THERE..?
It's not a zoo, and it's not called a zoo, it's a farm, so there are no wild animals like lions, tigers, Elephants and the like. The animals in the farm consist of your standard farm animals, such as...goats, sheep, chickens, pigs and more. There are also animals that aren't on your normal farm, such as Llamas, a snake, a big fat hairy spider and a few other lovely looking creatures.
The farm itself isn't the biggest, in fact, compared to some it is pretty small in fact, but it is crammed with some very cute little animals, and some funny looking ones too.
Apart from the animals on the farm, there's also a rather small, but well laid out little museum with exhibits such as World War 2 objects, old fashioned telephone systems, some rather old milk bottles, some rooms laid out in old fashioned ways and a lot more, all representing the passed and how people managed.
There's also a café which is situated next to the entrance gate, with ample room inside and several seats positioned around the outside, wiith the toilet facilities being near to the entrance of the museum.
And the disabled access is second to none with most, if not all, the farm open to wheel chairs without a struggle at all, although if there is a struggle the staff there are happy to help as they are the friendliest bunch of people I have met in a long time.
For health and safety reasons, and to stop you getting an upset stomach after stroking the animals, there are hand washing devices on almost every corner, with sinks on every other corner.
When we first got there it was just in time for one of the animal shows so we headed straight into the hall, where the show was being held, walking through the small but very well laid out museum. The show involved us, us being a group of visitors sitting in a few rows of chairs, listening to a man talk about the animals and the farm. Although the show did involve a lot of audience participation, which meant us singing along to a few songs such as Old McDonald had a farm, which was quite appropriate considering where we were.
The show lasted about twenty minutes and was aimed more towards the younger people in the crowd, gently introducing them to the ways of the animals in the farm.
As for the museum I mentioned, well, as I said, this was what I like to call compact and very well laid out. It is on two floors, sort of, with the second floor being a simple walkway around the edges of the building.
On the lower floor, there are many things scattered around the floor, although when I say scattered I should really say 'strategically positioned'. These items being a few vehicles, such as farm machinery, military equipment and others, which all seem to be in good condition as if ready for action.
There are also a few rooms from the passed, such as a Post Office, telephone exchange and even a prison cell.
Then, it's up the stairs and onto the walkway, with this second floor of several separate little rooms all containing different things from the passed, such as a women and her family in their house, a blacksmiths and even an outside toilet, with some of the rooms containing dodgy looking mannequins dressed accordingly, with each room having its own meaning.
Plus, in one room there's a lady with her back to you which, according to the book you can buy from the café, if she turned around would not be as 'pretty' as you would have hoped. Then, in another 'room' there's another rather surprise which, if you open the door, you'd wish you hadn't.
You can't go into the rooms but looking into them can give you a sense of actually being there.
Then it was out of the building and into the open air, heading through some open gates and into the fields and barns were the animals were. This is quite a good sized area with the paddocks allowing the few animals that walked around in them plenty of room to live.
In the barns there are the smaller animals, such as the cute and very friendly lambs, which had a tendency to bounce over to us for a bit of a tickle. Even the older goats were friendly, if a bit nibbly, especially a dark coloured one which was on its own in the corner of one of the barns. This goat seemed to be a little jealous as it watched people paying all that attention to the cute lambs and when we went over to it the goat seemed to go all giddy, like an over excited child in a sweet shop.
Each barn has several pens around the edges with a few animals in each, giving each animal ample room to move around. The animals looked quite happy and content, especially when they were being fed by the people walking around, the special animal feed can be bought from the café area so don't just feed them your prawn sandwiches and sausage rolls.
Then it was time to have a gentle wander around the fields which contained a few larger animals in separate paddocks, such as horses and a very fluffy Llama and more.
The area around the fields looks as though it is still under some form of construction so I'm guessing that the farm may get even bigger as time goes on, maybe.
There are many places to stop and enjoy the scenery, even though you are technically on the side of a busy road I managed to get the feel that I was actually in the middle of nowhere, enjoying the peace and quiet, that was until a lorry goes passed hooting it horn.
As for the value for money aspect, well, getting around the farm takes around 2-3 hours at a gentle stroll, if you take your time reading the information and taking in the gentleness of the place, although if you rush around you can be in and out with-in ten minutes I suppose. And take into account the time taken to have a picnic, or even a bite to eat in the café, (which we didn't do as we took our own food and drink), then you could stay here for a good 4 hours without getting bored. So a family ticket costing £18.00 for a 4 hour stop is not bad value at all, especially if you like looking at really cute and very friendly animals.
Also, for those people who like horse riding, there is a chance to have a ride around a paddock on one, which my eldest daughter, who loves horse riding, chose to do. Although she was a little disappointed as it only lasted about 2 minutes as the horse, with her on it, was led around the paddock, then back to the steps.
Although, at this point, I felt that this pony ride scenario was quite unprofessional and possible a little unsafe. Don't get me wrong, there were hats supplied, which was good, but with each person getting in the saddles there were no adjustments of the stirrups for a riders feet to slip into, This meant that the rider had to balance on the saddle, basically sitting as still as possible, one slip and they will fall off, with no hope of using their feet in the stirrups to push themselves back into position.
Maybe it was me just being a little over cautious but I felt that a few seconds to adjust the stirrups would make the riding experience a little more comfortable for the rider.
And also, another thing that slightly annoyed my daughter was the fact that I kept telling her to use the soap dispenser every time we passed one, and there are a lot screwed to almost every piece of wooden structure they could find.
In all, a pleasant day out for the family, especially the kids, as they can slightly interact with the animals, learning about how they act and being able to stroke them and feed them. Plus, the museum is a nice little extra as there is something in there too that will be enjoyable to everyone.
Try it if you're ever near Fleetwood, or finished spending your money in the Arcades of Blackpool, you'll love the cute little lambs.