Moorland farming explained on public open day

A trio of farms located in North York Moors National Park are among those across the region that are being prepared for an open day to better connect the public with working life in the countryside.

Open Farm Sunday will attract visitors to participating farms across the region. Picture by Bruce Rollinson.

Open Farm Sunday on June 11 will see Stepney Hill Farm near Scarborough and Botton Social Farm and Stonebeck Gate Farm at Little Fryup, both near Danby, welcome visitors for an insight into life on moorland farms and the vital role farmers play in looking after the landscape.

At Stonebeck Gate, farmers Jill and Andrew Kelly will stage sheep dog trials, a gun dog demonstration, sheep shearing and drystone walling. A treasure trove of traditional farm and domestic artefacts, collected locally over the decades, will be displayed and Cleveland Mountain Rescue Team will be on hand with one of their team vehicles.

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Children can meet pigs, cows, sheep and lambs, and North York Moors National Park staff and volunteers will highlight their work with farmers.

Sally Ann Smith, events and exhibitions co-ordinator at the North York Moors National Park Authority, said: “Visiting a working moorland farm is always a great day out for all the family and increases awareness of where our food comes from and the hard work that goes into producing it.

“Farmers play an instrumental role in the upkeep of the North York Moors, helping to maintain its landscape and support and encourage a diverse range of wildlife.”

Across Yorkshire, 25 events are planned, including at farms, farm shops, agricultural colleges and Stockbridge Technology Centre in Cawood, to mark Open Farm Sunday - an annual initiative co-ordinated by LEAF (Linking Environment and Farming).

To find your nearest participating farm, visit