A RENOWNED feature of spring time has made an unexpected festive appearance at Tatton Home Farm.

The farm welcomed four new arrivals last week – a quartet of lambs.

The newcomers were born on the evening of Thursday, November 26.

Penny and Dolly, two Poll Dorset ewes each had one male lamb and Tilly the texel ewe had twins, a boy – ‘Frank(incense)’ – and a girl – ‘Missy’, short for Mistletoe.

The twins are Tilly’s first lambs and are very special to the farm as Tilly arrived as an orphan lamb from a local farm in January 2008 and has made her home at the centre ever since.

And conveniently the four woolly wonders have arrived just in time to take part in the farm’s Christmas celebrations.

Every year, a number of farm animals are selected to take part in the ‘Live Nativity’ scene in the stable, alongside donkey trio Daisy, Dotty and Frosty.

Jayne Chapman, farm manager, said: “It was quite a surprise to see four newborn lambs early on Friday morning, as they weren’t all due on the same day – but we are so pleased that they’ve arrived just in time to be our star attractions this Christmas.

“We’ve got the stable ready for them to move into for the coming weekend and in weekends throughout December.”

The fleecy friends will be looking forward to seeing another special character making a home for himself at the farm this December. Father Christmas and his elves will be meeting younger farm visitors on the weekends of December 12/13 and 19/20.

Visitors will also be able to meet a dozen December arrivals – Betty the Berkshire’s litter of 12 piglets, whom she farrowed on Saturday, November 28.

Lots of other festive activities will be taking place at the farm. A storyteller will weave winter magic with seasonal tales and Aunty Mary will be keeping warm in the cottage and helping children to make salt dough decorations.

There will also be fun face painting and the opportunity to paint a Christmas decoration in the schoolroom.

Opening times are 11am to 4pm, with last entry at 3pm. Entry fees are £4.50 for adults and £3 for children.

Prices apply to National Trust members and the usual park entry charge of £4.50 per car applies.

The farm will also be open between Christmas and New Year and on January 2 and 3.

For further information on all the events this Christmas, call 01625 374400, or visit the website at tattonpark.org.uk.