High fives as Suffolk Food Hall gathering expands Suffolk Trinity rural icon

Some of the Birchwood Primary School, Martlesham Heath, pupils who visited Suffolk Food Hall at Wher

Some of the Birchwood Primary School, Martlesham Heath, pupils who visited Suffolk Food Hall at Wherstead to see the Suffolk Quintuple of Suffolk Punch horse, Suffolk sheep, Red Poll cattle, Suffolk large black pig and Suffolk Ixworth chickens. Picture: GREGG BROWN - Credit: Gregg Brown

The famous Suffolk Trinity trio that is a popular and powerful icon of the county’s rich rural heritage should really be a five-strong livestock line-up, it was suggested yesterday.

Some of the Birchwood Primary School, Martlesham Heath, pupils who visited Suffolk Food Hall at Wher

Some of the Birchwood Primary School, Martlesham Heath, pupils who visited Suffolk Food Hall at Wherstead to see the Suffolk Quintuple of Suffolk Punch horse, Suffolk sheep, Red Poll cattle, Suffolk large black pig and Suffolk Ixworth chickens. Picture: GREGG BROWN - Credit: Gregg Brown

The “missing links” - pig and chicken breeds that have close connections with the county - were assembled alongside the Trinity’s traditional Suffolk sheep, Suffolk Punch horses and a Red Poll cow for what was thought to be the first ever gathering of the Suffolk Quintuple.

It was an innovative way to show pupils from Birchwood Primary School, Martlesham Heath, the importance of the county’s rural heritage as the youngsters visited Suffolk Food hall at Wherstead, near Ipswich. The school was continuing its close relationship with the food hall as part of its long-running and highly acclaimed environmental and food provenance education.

About 30 Year 5 pupils were introduced to the Suffolk Quintuple in what school governor Paul Firman said was a “truly unique Suffolk event that, to our knowledge, has never been seen before and brings these five Suffolk animals together in the same field.”

The Trinity animals were Suffolk Punch mare Samford Touramaline and her eight-week-old filly Samford Emerald, owned by George Paul, of Wherstead, two Suffolk ewe lambs owned by Stephen Cobbald, of Acton, near Sudbury, and Red Poll cow Hallelujah and her Red Poll/Angus cross bull calf, owned by Oliver and Robert Paul, of the food hall.

Some of the Birchwood Primary School, Martlesham Heath, pupils who visited Suffolk Food Hall at Wher

Some of the Birchwood Primary School, Martlesham Heath, pupils who visited Suffolk Food Hall at Wherstead to see the Suffolk Quintuple of Suffolk Punch horse, Suffolk sheep, Red Poll cattle, Suffolk large black pig and Suffolk Ixworth chickens. Picture: GREGG BROWN - Credit: Gregg Brown

Making up the Suffolk Quintuple were four Suffolk large black pigs, owned by Jackie Nayler and her husband John, of Old Martlesham, and Birchwood’s own two Suffolk Ixworth chickens.

Mr Firman said: “We felt there was a missing link or two with the Trinity. Suffolk’s farming and rural heritage is so important and it is so important to keep it going and keep it recognised - but there are more than just three special Suffolk livestock breeds that are part of it.

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“These five animals have a real connection with the county. We want our children to appreciate just how important their rural heritage is - and this is a great hands-on way of showing them.

“I would think that many people today are not aware of the importance of the Trinity - they perhaps go past the Trinity Park showground and see the Trinity statue without understanding what it really means to Suffolk.”

Some of the Birchwood Primary School, Martlesham Heath, pupils who visited Suffolk Food Hall at Wher

Some of the Birchwood Primary School, Martlesham Heath, pupils who visited Suffolk Food Hall at Wherstead to see the Suffolk Quintuple of Suffolk Punch horse, Suffolk sheep, Red Poll cattle, Suffolk large black pig and Suffolk Ixworth chickens. Picture: GREGG BROWN - Credit: Gregg Brown

He joked: “Perhaps we should put a Suffolk large black pig and an Ixworth chicken on top of the Punch there too.”