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Caroline and Chris with the BFA2020 award

You'll no doubt have noticed that it's been a pretty big week at the farm this week, and I will talk about our biggest news, but before we get there we can't forget the rest of the farm. Even when we're celebrating we're still looking after the animals and developing the project at the same time. Farming never stops.

One of the areas we've been concentrating on recently is the rescue animal area, a space to help us take in animals as and when we can. We've got a temporary space in the barn for now where three new rescue ducks (one is called Issy, I must see if the others have names) are settling into their new farm life alongside our rabbits (including a couple of babies) and guinea pigs. Though thanks to a lot of hard work from volunteer Amelia, a new area is starting to develop. The area will house smaller animals on arrival at the farm and give them a peaceful space to enjoy before moving onto farm life or being rehomed. I'll keep you updated on progress. Thanks to Suze and our patreons for making the work possible, and if you'd like to help find out more here.

We have some amazing support keeping the farm going and we're so thankful that local businesses help when they can as well. Even when we're stuck with a flat tyre on our tractor, help was not too far away. Thank you G&H Tyres for coming to the rescue with our old tractor Bessie, it was a tough tyre to change but they did it. It'll be fantastic to have our tractor up and running again.

While our tractor was being fixed, Bumblebee made a visit back to the main farm, it must have been the sight of extra buckets. Thankfully she's still enjoying splitting her time between farm and field, so we can have some short breaks from finding her in a bucket. While our other animals testing out different areas of the farm, Marlene and Trigger the pigs, have also taken to a little more outdoor sleeping in our barn store (I can't blame them, it looks pretty cosy) and gardening in our sensory garden area. Good luck in there Trigger and Marlene, there's a lot of work to do in that garden following lockdown.

Farmer Casey celebrating the award win with Helie

Of course the biggest news this week is winning the Digital Innovator of the Year Award at the British Farming Awards. Although the award win was based on the information submitted this year, it's taken a lot of hard work to get the project and digital activity to where it is today, and I'm so proud that all of the effort has been recognised. Helie has worked hard to get funding in, build relationships with local schools and keep all of the paperwork together. Caroline has been with us well over a year now bringing energy, creativity and putting up with Chris. While Chris has never stopped developing CaenhillCC, caring for his animals, inspiring the students and creating videos to educate and share smiles.

To say I'm proud of them and that Casey and I are proud to be a part of the team is an understatement. Together they've taught us the value of hard work, the joy of working as a team and most importantly, to never give up on our dreams. I'm just sad that Chris' parents (my grandparents), Coral and Ken, aren't here today to see everything my dad and his team have achieved, they would have been so proud. Not only did Coral dream of having an animal rescue centre, but Ken was a hard working farmer too, who I'm sure taught my dad a lot of the skills he uses today. My dad has dedicated the award to Ken, who would have been celebrating his 90th Birthday today and I can't think of a more fitting tribute to such an incredible person.

It wasn't the award night we'd dreamt of with social restrictions meaning we were sat in front of the computer, but it was certainly special that some of you were able to join Chris and Caroline watch the awards live with me in the comments. The surprise of winning was real, we really had no idea, and it was amazing to share that. We've made sure we celebrated after the big night alongside Helie and Farmer Casey, all topped off with a lot of dancing and photos yesterday.

Thank you so much to the British Farming Awards, the judges, event sponsor Morrisons and award sponsor Fullwood Packo for this amazing recognition for Chris and the team. We're all so honoured to be representing British farming alongside some amazing nominees and winners. Thank you also to everyone out there supporting us, our patreons, the Bumblebees, our followers, you all made this award possible too. You believed in us, shared us and have kept us going, so this award is for you too.

I think I've said enough thank yous this week but before I sign off I just want to let you know about some special content coming your way. They'll be a special Halloween Friday night live with Chris, Caroline and special guest Sarah sharing some spooky tales. We'll have some Halloween fun with you at the farm on Saturday, we might even get Daisy to do some banana bobbing. Plus we'll be getting copies of our calendars and Christmas cards to share with you once Halloween is over and we start planning for Christmas.

Until next time, keep safe,

Kara, Casey and Teddy 

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