The Lancing College Farm Project is a working farm set on 70 acres of the beautiful South Downs National Park, within the 550 acre Lancing College Estate.
Education is the foremost of the farm's activities, while conservation and animal welfare are at the heart of its foundations. Students who attend the farm get to experience a wide range of activities that stretch beyond farming.
The Farm is used as co-curricular programme and is open to any pupil with an interest. Alternately pupils will witness the Farm being firmly integrated with the academic side of life at the College, providing opportunities to take subjects such as Biology, Geography and Business Studies out of the classroom and into a practical situation in the field.
About the Lancing Farm Project
Under the expert guidance of Jon Hutcheon, the Farm Manager, pupils learn about modern farming methods as well as traditional activities such as hedge-laying, coppicing and green wood-working.
There is a selection of small animals for those interested in veterinary care and animal husbandry. Sheep, pigs and poultry are all managed and produced in line with traditional and current farming practice, including rearing and health care. There is an emphasis on game and conservation management, including a programme dedicated to the re-introduction of the grey partridge.
All of this is combined with a wide range of conservation activities, from hedge laying and coppicing, to species monitoring and bird ringing. For those students interested in rural activities or animal care the farm is an ideal place to learn with ‘hands on’ activities combined with classroom learning. The syllabus for biology students is especially relevant to the work of the farm, a connection which is supported by the Head of Department.
Enrichment and Extension
Through various stewardship and woodland grant schemes the farm maintains links with organisations such as Natural England and the Forestry Commission, and it works closely with the South Downs National Park Authority to manage the woodland, ditches, ponds and rivers adjacent to the farm, replanting hedges and monitoring the wildlife.
It is a member of the NFU and LEAF, and takes part in Open Farm Sunday, a national initiative for local communities. At other times of the year the farm hosts educational visits for primary and independent preparatory schools, and provides work placements for agricultural students.