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28 March 2018

Winter weather sees lambs arrive earlier than expected

They say when it comes to little ones, expect the unexpected!

And that was certainly the case at Wiltshire College’s Lackham campus, where many lambs arrived a little earlier than planned – ahead of the start of the annual Lambing Weekends!

The event is one of the spring highlights on the College calendar and this year more than 1,000 ewes have been lambing, who between them were expecting two sets of quads, 114 triplets, 605 twins and 253 single lambs.

Agriculture staff and students work around the clock have worked around the clock preparing for and looking after the ewes to ensure the safe arrival of the lambs.

Level 3 Agriculture student Ollie Whittock, aged 17, said: “It was great to see so many people come along to visit.

“For much of the time, I was wearing a headset talking to visitors about what was happening in the lambing sheds and this was really good for building my confidence as I am naturally quite a shy person.

“The course at Lackham is so hands on and practical that we all feel confident with lambing and all the students work really well together and have become even closer.”

Bethany Gullis, 18, is a second year Level 3 agriculture student.

She said: “I love being at Lackham and enjoy lambing so much that I volunteered to do as many shifts as I could to be involved.

“I live on a dairy farm so it’s a nice change for me and I really enjoyed working as part of a team and supporting each other.”

Ian Revill is the Assistant Principal at Lackham.

He said: “It is amazing how different the weather can be in March!

“I have known years where we have all be in t-shirts and wearing sun cream.

“The first weekend and the second Saturday were a great success with everyone in really good spirits despite some cold weather.

“The visitors did the great ‘British’ thing of just getting layered up and getting out there, determined not to let the weather spoil their plans and most visitors told me they saw lambs being born.

Unfortunately, the amber snow warning and significant overnight snow combined with a forecast of “more to follow” lead to the difficult decision to cancel the final day, but we will now look forward to welcoming visitors again to next year’s event.”

Students from other departments were also supporting the event, with the Aspire Salon of Hair and Beauty offering face painting and glitter tattoos and Foundation Studies ran a tea shop.