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Big turnout expected for festive farmers' market

PUBLISHED: 18:40 31 October 2019

From left, brothers David and Roger Barron and David's son, Ross, at Pattocks farm with their Christmas turkeys  Picture: SARAH BARRON

From left, brothers David and Roger Barron and David's son, Ross, at Pattocks farm with their Christmas turkeys Picture: SARAH BARRON

Archant

A Colchester family is holding a farm open day and Christmas market in the run-up to the festive season.

Machinery on display at Pattocks Farm Open Day and Christmas Market, which  is set to return this year  PIcture: SARAH BARRONMachinery on display at Pattocks Farm Open Day and Christmas Market, which is set to return this year PIcture: SARAH BARRON

Sarah Barron, of G & J Barron Farms, which is based at Chappel, said they were reviving the market by popular demand after launching an inaugural event last year.

The farm showcase takes place on Sunday, November 3, from 10am to 4pm, and includes a wide variety of market stalls selling everything from food and drink, art, furniture, sculpture, plants, homeware, Christmas decorations and gifts.

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There will be a display of old and new farm machinery, turkeys, pigs, sheep and cattle. The Barrons are also offering tractor trailer rides around the farm and Father Christmas will be making an early appearance at the event.

"Last time we had over 2000 visitors so we are expecting a big turnout. The majority is undercover, so rain will not be too much of an issue," said Sarah.

Market stalls at Pattocks Farm Open Day and Christmas Market, which  is set to return this year  PIcture: SARAH BARRONMarket stalls at Pattocks Farm Open Day and Christmas Market, which is set to return this year PIcture: SARAH BARRON

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"We shall be serving hot and cold drinks, cakes, hot turkey rolls and sausages and bacon rolls. Our seasonal farm shop will be open selling a small selection of what we sell in the three days prior to Christmas Day."

Colchester Young Farmers Club will be help out on the day to raise its profile, along with members of the local community, and in return the farm will donate to the club's chosen charities. Recipients will include the Great Tey Swimming Pool Fund, which aims to rebuild a pool for community use.

G & J Barron was established in its current location in 1943 by George Barron, who previously farmed turkeys with his brothers at Summers Hall in Blackmore End near Braintree.

Market stalls at Pattocks Farm Open Day and Christmas Market, which  is set to return this year  PIcture: SARAH BARRONMarket stalls at Pattocks Farm Open Day and Christmas Market, which is set to return this year PIcture: SARAH BARRON

Today it is run in partnership by George's sons, David and Roger, and David's son, Ross. The farm business includes 1300 acres of arable land, cropped with wheat, oats, oilseed rape, borage, echium and quinoa. Each year the Barrons rear more than 2200 free range bronze turkeys and traditional white turkeys for the Thanksgiving and Christmas market.

"All our turkeys are fed on our home-grown cereals which are milled on the farm," said Sarah. "The welfare of our turkeys is very important to us. They are given fresh, home-grown straw each day and forage on surplus apples and pumpkins to keep them entertained."

The event takes place at Pattocks Farm, Chappel, Colchester, CO6 2EG. Entry costs £1.

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