Outdoor centre to promote local food production to young people about health and wellbeing

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A PROJECT which brings new learning experiences to children and young people has opened in the North York Moors national park.

It will use 97 acres of farmland to teach young people and their leaders about where their food comes from and about the importance of fresh, seasonal and local produce combined with the benefits of being active.

Peat Rigg Outdoor Training Centre at Cropton, near Pickering, provides practical sessions to allow students to get involved with food growing and livestock production as well as learning how to prepare healthy meals for themselves.

Students also take part in outdoor activities, learning about healthy active lifestyles.

The project is partly funded by the Big Lottery Local Food Project, a £59.8m programme supported by the Big Lottery Fund which provides money for the projects working to make local food more accessible and affordable to communities.

The centre has been extended with a new sustainable eco-friendly building adding more than 30 residential places to the existing accommodation.

Among the courses Peat Rigg offers are those which are aimed at helping those who are disadvantaged, disaffected and special needs groups.

They will learn about farming, horticulture, cooking healthy food and the benefits of being active in the best environment.

Centre director Ian Thorpe said: “This is an exciting and innovative project, which will make a big difference to the lives of many young people in the North East by giving them a unique opportunity to improve their health and wellbeing.”