CUMBRIAN farmers are being urged to open their farmgates and join in the farming industry's annual open day later in June.

On Sunday, June 27 LEAF Open Farm Sunday (LOFS) will return to celebrate its 15th event since the initiative was launched in 2006.

At a time when food and farming has generated greater interest than ever before, LOFS organisers, LEAF (Linking Environment And Farming), is calling on farmers to take part and help promote the British food and farming story.

This year Open Farm Sunday will be slightly different with the trend for smaller events, with activities where visitors can manage their own learning such as self-guided farm walks.

Every farmer that takes part will be able to decide on the type of event they would like to offer, for how long and for how many people.

LEAF Open Farm Sunday Manager, Annabel Shackleton said: “LEAF Open Farm Sunday plays a vital role promoting British farming, dispelling myths and helping people to value the food they eat. We are actively encouraging more smaller events this year. A simple farm walk for 30 people is both rewarding and manageable for all involved. We know there may be some nervousness around Covid and we want to ensure both host farmers, and visitors attending, feel safe and confident to go ahead. As theatres, cinemas and dining indoors reopens, remember transmission rates are significantly reduced outdoors. The farming stage – our wonderful countryside - is the perfect venue to safely welcome visitors.”

Also this year farmers can use a free ticketing system, such as TryBooking, and can choose any Sunday in June to open their gates and still benefit from LOFS branding and resources.