Spring over to Chester House Estate to bottle-feed lambs and join egg hunt

The event is part of the spring and Easter events
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Visitors to the Chester House Estate will have more than a spring in their step as the attraction invites guests to get hands on to help feed dozens of lambs.

Part of the new complex of buildings at the North Northants Council-owned £14.5m estate, between Wellingborough and Rushden, has been set aside as a temporary barn space for sheep.

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As a special springtime attraction the site will welcome guests to feed the lambs with bottles of milk - as well as getting a close look at some of the Suffolk ewes and their babies.

Cllr Helen Howell and Jack Pishhorn with some of the lambsCllr Helen Howell and Jack Pishhorn with some of the lambs
Cllr Helen Howell and Jack Pishhorn with some of the lambs

Holders of a the estate’s Spring Passport - priced at £8 a head - will be able to feed the lambs and take part in an egg-citing hunt across the 85-acre estate to win a chocolate treat.

Business manager Jack Pishhorn said: "All the lambs have been born on the estate and are looked after by our tenant farmer.

"This is part of our 'farm to fork' educational journey where children can learn about their food."

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Visitors can buy their Spring Passport that entitles them to unlimited time in the lamb barn where there are pens containing the lambs.

The 'cade' lambs were born on the Chester House EstateThe 'cade' lambs were born on the Chester House Estate
The 'cade' lambs were born on the Chester House Estate

More than 60 volunteers have been trained to farm attraction industry standards on how to handle the lambs that will be fed five times a day - as well as in the morning and the evening. There are evening sessions and private sessions available too.

As well as the lamb feeding, guests can enjoy a hunt around the grounds.

Mr Pishhorn said: "The egg hunt will take in the whole of the estate, from the River Nene to the farmhouse, so will give visitors an opportunity to get off the beaten track and explore the wonderful site we have here.”

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This year the attraction will welcome its first wedding and the farmhouse bed and breakfast accommodation is fully booked until October - a real boost for income.

The Chester House Estate lambing experience runs from March 12 to May 1The Chester House Estate lambing experience runs from March 12 to May 1
The Chester House Estate lambing experience runs from March 12 to May 1

Over the spring and summer there will live events including concerts featuring ABBA, Queen and Elton John tribute acts, a performance of Romeo and Juliet, a beer festival and historic re-enactments.

Mr Pishhorn said: "Of our income, 40 per cent will be made over the next few months now that the weather is getting nicer.

"So far so good - we've had very few teething issues. All our team and volunteers are working hard to make it work. We are still hitting our targets.

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"We want people to come along and support us. There's always something new and the estate is at its best in the spring. If people haven't come they need to come."

Jack Pishhorn and Cllr Helen HowellJack Pishhorn and Cllr Helen Howell
Jack Pishhorn and Cllr Helen Howell

Cllr Helen Howell, North Northants Council’s deputy leader and executive member for sport, leisure, culture and tourism, said: "People still don't know about this place. We are launching a free app 'Discover North Northants' that people can download and businesses can add what's going on. It will be able to tell you what is going on near you and give you special offers."

To allow staff to manage the estate's capacity and stagger arrivals, all guests are being asked to pre-book their free car parking for their visit.

Once a car parking space has been booked people should visit the Easter events page to purchase a Easter passport including the giant Easter egg hunt and cade bottle feeding experience - which takes place between 10am and 4pm each day.

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Passports are £8 per person but are only needed for those who are wishing to receive the chocolate prize at the end of the hunt and those who wish to feed the lambs. Those who are accompanying do not need to purchase a passport and are free of charge.

For more information and to book please visit -https://chesterhouseestate.org/lambing-festival/