Sacrewell Farm’s New Mascot

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A farm near Peterborough has a new mascot, thanks to the creative talents of its young visitors.

Over half-term, children visiting the farm were asked to design a new mascot for the farm which will then be developed to become to farm’s new children’s mascot when it rebrands in the summer.

With more than 100 entries it was difficult decision, but in the end it was a colourful peacock that came out tops.

 Mia-mascot winner

The mascot was designed by six-year-old Mia Barham from Market Deeping who visits the farm regularly with her family.

Mia said: “I chose to draw a peacock because one let me stroke it once and they are my favourite animals ever.”

Mum, Kate, added: “They are the first thing she looks for when she comes into the farm.

“She has always loved drawing. She drew her first picture before she was two and it was a smiley face with arms and legs. I still have it on the fridge.”

Mia is a pupil at Linchfield Primary School in Deeping St James and was at school when she found out she had won. Her prize was a family annual pass to the farm so that she can see her mascot as it is developed by a professional graphic designer.

She said: “I was very excited. I went and told my teacher straight away. I thought I could come and see a peacocks anytime now.”

When the mascot has been developed, he will appear on all children’s interpretation boards at the farm. The farm is rebranding as part of its Heritage Lottery Funded Watermill Project.

Marketing and communications executive Megan Horner said: “We were delighted with Mia’s entry and can’t wait to see how her peacock is developed.

“We had a lot of votes for peacocks. We have six male birds here at the farm and they are definitely one of our most popular animals. Thank you to everyone who entered.”

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Mumsnet calls for manifesto commitment on better miscarriage care

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Half of women who miscarry wait 24 hours or more for a scan, and are treated alongside women with healthy pregnancies 

Mumsnet calls for manifesto commitment on better miscarriage care

Mumsnet, the UK’s biggest website for parents, is today publishing the results of a survey into patients’ care and experiences following miscarriage. Around a quarter of a million women miscarry in the UK each year (1) – about one in five pregnancies ends in miscarriage – but the statistics published today show that the treatment and support women receive fails to meet their needs or measure up to official national guidelines.

A survey of over one thousand women (2) shows:

  • Half (46%) had to wait over 24 hours for a scan to determine if their baby was still alive, with one in five (18%) waiting longer than three days “When I asked how much longer it would be, I was told I was taking up their time.” A Mumsnet user

  • Half (47%) were treated alongside women with ongoing pregnancies “I sat with other ladies who were still pregnant and waiting for scans… seeing their happy faces tore me apart.” A Mumsnet user

  • A third (31%) of those who miscarried at home following a scan were not offered any pain relief, or adequate pain relief “I was under the impression that miscarrying at home was the easy option. It certainly is not easy. I have been in agony.” A Mumsnet user

  • 58% of respondents wanted counselling, but only 12% were offered it “I had to wait six months to get counselling and lost six months of my life as I was not   coping with the loss.” A Mumsnet user

  • 56% of respondents wanted further medical care but only 26% were offered it “The hospital said they’d ask a health visitor to contact me. That was two months ago; nobody has been in touch.” A Mumsnet user

  • Only a quarter (23%) spoke of their experience to friends, and only 13% told wider family “When I felt ready to talk, I didn’t have anyone ready to listen.”  A Mumsnet user

In 2012, NICE guidance on the management of miscarriage stated that miscarrying at home (known as ‘expectant management’) would be the default clinical response for women undergoing miscarriage before the 13th week of pregnancy, but today’s results show this policy is leaving women without the support they need.

  • Only 15% of women who miscarried at home following a scan felt they had the right support, information and pain relief to manage “I was told, over the phone, to ‘just sit on the toilet and hopefully it will all come out’.”

  • 11 people were asked to store their foetus at home prior to further tests on the embryo “[I don’t want to] catch my miscarried embryo in a urine sample pot at home, keep it in the fridge overnight if necessary, then take it on the train (two hours) for genetic testing.”

Mumsnet users have developed a five-point Miscarriage Code of Care, which calls for straightforward improvements in the treatment parents receive:

1. Supportive staff

2. Access to scanning

3. Safe and appropriate places for treatment

4. Good information and effective treatment

5. Joined-up care

Many of the Code’s points are included in best-practice guidance from the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the Department of Health, but the research shows that, too often, this guidance is not being implemented.

Mumsnet is now asking the Secretary of State for Health, the shadow Health Minister and the junior Health Minister to commit to improving miscarriage care during the lifetime of the next parliament.

Justine Roberts, Mumsnet Founder, said:

“There’s no escaping the pain of a miscarriage, but for this to be compounded by lack of treatment, pain relief, good care or just plain human kindness is completely unacceptable. We are calling on the three main parties to include a pledge in their manifestos to improve miscarriage care, based on the principles in our code.”

Cathy Warwick, Chief Executive of the Royal College of Midwives, said:

“The Royal College of Midwives welcomes and supports the Mumsnet code of care which aims to improve care for women at a very difficult time. Midwives and other health professionals have an important role to play in supporting women and families through the physical and psychological impact of miscarriage. Kind, compassionate and empathetic communication around care and treatment is an essential step to support families. It is particularly important that there is effective communication between the hospital, GP and midwife to provide ongoing support or advice, as needed.”

Jane Brewin, Chief Executive of Tommy’s, said:

“Losing a baby is a devastating experience and our helpline hears from people every day who are struggling to make sense of what has happened to them and why. More research is needed to help us understand the causes of miscarriage so we can develop treatments that help save babies’ lives. We want families to know that they are not alone and that Tommy’s helpline is here to support anyone who has been through this heartbreak.”

Susan Seenan, Chief Executive of the national charity Infertility Network UK, said:

“Miscarriage is an extremely distressing, and often frightening experience and sadly even health professionals can underestimate the impact which a miscarriage can have.  Good support and access to counselling from sensitive trained staff who understand the emotional as well as the physical effect of miscarriage on both women and their partners can make an enormous difference to those dealing with the grief of losing a baby.  We hope that this campaign will lead to better care and support for everyone affected by what can be a hugely traumatic experience.”

When Mumsnet Local met Sid.

One of the perks of Mumsnet Local is the opportunity to meet people you wouldn’t necessarily get to meet in every day life.

Mumsnet Norfolk & Suffolk recently got the chance to meet Actor and CBeebies present Sid Sloane at a press day and ask him some questions posed by Mumsnetters and their families. And yes the biscuit question was asked, well this is Mumsnet after all…..

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#Jealousmuch

Check out the blog post with the lovely Sid.

http://mumsnetsuffolkandnorfolk.wordpress.com/category/we-meet/

Record Breaking Easter at Sacrewell Farm

Staff at Sacrewell Farm near Wansford are wiping the sweat from their brows as they celebrate a record-breaking Easter.

The farm, which opened its new play barn on April 5th, has had more than 13,000 people through its doors in the last fortnight, making it the busiest Easter on record.

Marketing and communications officer Megan Horner said: “We are astounded at the number of people who have come to visit us this Easter and enjoy the Big Bunny Hunt and the new play barn.

“As it is our 50th anniversary as a charity it means even more to us that people are coming and supporting us this year. The play barn is just the beginning of the exciting things we have planned for this year.”

The farm has also welcomed a litter of extremely rare breed piglets to its attractions. Ada, their British Lop sow gave birth to 12 adorable piglets last month and all are doing well.

piglets close up

(Picture courtesy of Sacrewell Farm)

To top off the good news, a Soay lamb was born on Easter Sunday, bringing the farm’s lambing season to a close. The lamb has been named Skye after the region of Scotland the sheep originate from.

Miss Horner added: “It has been yet another successful year for rare breeds at Sacrewell. We have had a mix of 21 Lincoln Longwool and Jacob lambs born. Skye brings our total to 22.

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our visitors who continue to support us as an educational charity and who take an interest in British farming.”

The next big event at the farm is the 1960s Spring Fair on May 4th and 5th which will celebrate 50 years of the William Scott Abbott Trust and feature May pole dancing, Morris Men, local ales, farm activities and even a bucking sheep.

For information visit http://www.sacrewell.org.uk

Otter Park – New playground at Ferry Meadows

If you’ve been to Ferry Meadows laterly you will have noticed the new playground that opened on 4th April.

Pupils from St Botolph’s CE Primary School, have been involved in the project for some months, opened the playground and were the first children to play on the amazing new play equipment.

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A meandering path travels through the playground taking children on a journey of discovery.  With water and sand play, cradle swings, an oversized slide, a hollow log, a clambering bridge, a tree den and swinging acorn pods, there is going to be plenty to explore.

Andrée Davies, of landscape architects Davies White Ltd, said “Nature is the ultimate playground and that’s exactly what we have designed here. Inspired by the local wildlife and landscape, the Otter playground is inclusive and fun for all the family, especially young children and toddlers.”

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Teresa Wood, Visitor Services Manager, said  “The Otter playground will be an exciting place for young children to come and explore.  This is the first of a three year programme aimed at improving the play areas in Ferry Meadows.  We have worked with local schools, our Nene Park volunteers and other groups to understand what our visitors want from the play provision in the Park.  Things like the acorn seats are a direct result of this work.”

Have you been to Otter Park yet?

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Longthorpe Tower is brought to life with downloadable audio guides

Longthorpe Tower is often a forgotten gem amongst Peterborough’s historical venues. I received this press release regarding new audio guides to accompany you whilst you look around.

Longthorpe Tower

Vivacity Heritage is proud to announce the release of audio guides to accompany your visit to Longthorpe Tower!  From this Easter, you will be able to hear the stories and secrets of the Tower, from its construction in 1300 to its conservation today.

The guide features different characters from over 600 years of history. Meet an irate quarryman who brought stone from Barnack to use around the windows and doors, and listen to Lady Margaret de Thorpe making party plans for the harvest festivities!

Discover how the Home Guard used the Tower as an observation post during World War Two, and how in the aftermath Hugh Horrell unearthed the sumptuous medieval wall paintings that had hidden under plaster for centuries.

The creation of the audio guides was managed by Abi Wilson, Heritage Development Officer at Vivacity, who was delighted to see this project through from foundation to fruition: “It has been a real privilege to work on this project, and I am so excited that everyone can now share in it. Longthorpe Tower is a fascinating building, full of surprises, and finding a way to bring its story to life has been an incredibly rewarding experience.”

This project has been achieved in partnership with English Heritage. Download the audio guide for free onto your smartphone or MP3 player by visiting www.vivacity-peterborough.com/longthorpeaudio. If you do not have an audio device, there are a small number of MP3 players available for use at Longthorpe Tower.

Longthorpe Tower reopens on 5 April, when there will be a very special event running Saturday 5 – Sunday 6 April, 10am-5pm: Preparing for War – The Tower and Richard III. It’s 1485 and Sir Robert Whittlebury is preparing to fight for King Richard III. Now’s your chance to meet soldiers, handle weapons, see the ‘arming of the knight’ daily at 11am and 3pm, find out about delicious food and gruesome cures, and take part in children’s military drill sessions! Adults £4, concessions £3 and families £10. There’s no need to book – just drop-in!