KNUTSFORD Academy student Ben Senior unveiled a £1.3 million development of Tatton Park Farm attraction.

More than 150 people attended the launch of the innovative Field to Fork project, which tells the story of the journey of our food from ‘field to fork’.

In its heyday the Farm helped feed the whole of the Tatton Estate, and it is hoped the Field to Fork narrative will help reconnect families with the origins of the food they eat by bringing to life this fascinating heritage.

Ben plays the part of the Farm’s ‘Boy’ character in the Field to Fork story and app, and cut a ribbon to launch the project.

Carole Mullineux, Tatton’s business development manager said: “Field to Fork is a ground-breaking project – there’s nothing quite like it anywhere else.

“There are a lot of animal petting farms in the UK, but nowhere that children can get the full experience of a working farm and how food makes a journey - from a field being ploughed, to seeds being sown, crops being grown and then harvested to process into animal feed to produce healthy animals for meat.

“People are losing touch with where their food comes from and our aim is to provide this information in a sensitive and thought-provoking way.”

The ribbon-cutting followed speeches by Cllr George Walton, chairman of the Tatton Park Board, Aileen McEvoy, committee member for the Heritage Lottery Fund North West region and Cllr Don Stockton, Cheshire East Council Environment Portfolio Holder.

Visitors at the launch event had the opportunity to explore the mill, where original machinery has been restored, and visit the slaughter house, open to the public for the first time, where soundscapes and visual effects compare practices from the 1940s with animal husbandry today.

They were also treated to cookery demonstrations and tastings of Tatton Farm and Estate reared produce and enjoyed cheese and ice-cream making in the Shippon.

Guests also enjoyed demonstrations of traditional techniques including dry stone walling, wool spinning and hand milking and learned about the history and care of all the rare breed animals.

Aileen McEvoy said: “Tatton Farm’s Field to Fork project portrays the skills of workers and local people from the past, and it is our hope that communities will become more involved in heritage as a result. We would like to offer our huge congratulations to the team.”

Laura Armitage, Tatton Park’s Learning and Visitor Services Manager said: “The ability to understand where food comes from and consequently make informed decisions about diet and lifestyle is an essential part of pastoral education, and we are one of very few sites to explore this in any detail.”